HomeSportsUF Gymnastics: No. 2 Gators Win Big at No. 17 Auburn
UF Gymnastics: No. 2 Gators Win Big at No. 17 Auburn
February 17, 2020
BY MARY HOWARD / COURTESY OF FLORIDAGATORS.COM
Another 10.0 by Trinity Thomas and another strong overall team performance helped No. 2 Gators post one of the nation’s top-10 totals in win at No. 17 Auburn.
It wasn’t just love in the air for this Valentine’s Day competition. It also included a perfect 10.0 by Trinity Thomas and a big win, as No. 2 Florida gymnastics took a 197.875 – 194.75 win Friday at No. 17 Auburn.
This is the second time Florida posted a 197.875 this season. Along with Florida’s 198.375 on Jan. 24 and its 197.80 on Jan. 31, the Gators own four of the nation’s top 10 totals this season.
FRIDAY’S MEET Another 10.0 on balance beam highlighted an evening of spectacular performances by Florida sophomore Trinity Thomas. Along with her beam win, Thomas posted marks of 9.95 to win uneven bars and floor exercise, plus she equaled her collegiate best of 39.775 to claim her fifth 2020 all-around win.
Freshman Payton Richards set her collegiate vault best of 9.95 to complete Florida’s event titles sweep. It was her second vault win of the last three meets. Richards also took second in all-around after matching her career high of 39.50.
Several strong scores helped boost the Gators’ team total Friday. Sophomore Savannah Schoenherr anchored the bars lineup with a 9.90. Both senior Amelia Hundley and sophomore Sydney Johnson-Scharpf turned in a 9.90 on floor. Florida finished the meet on beam, with senior Rachel Gowey earning a 9.95 and junior Alyssa Baumann a 9.925.
Two Gators equaled their collegiate bests of 9.875 Friday – senior Sierra Alexander (vault) and sophomore Leah Clapper (beam).
ANOTHER 10.0 FOR TRINITY THOMAS: With her 10.0 on beam tonight, Trinity Thomas now has three perfect marks in 2020.
Her 10.0 beam routine last week made Thomas the nation’s first with perfect marks on multiple events. Two others joined her with 10.0s earned tonight – Oklahoma’s Maggie Nichols (vault, bars) and LSU’s Kiya Johnson (vault, beam).
Of the four Gator gymnasts to earn a 10.0 on beam, Thomas joins Gator Great Bridget Sloan as the only two to earn multiple beam perfect marks. Thomas is the first to earn a beam 10.0 in consecutive meets.
GATOR PERFORMANCE NOTES:
Tonight’s performance pushes Trinity Thomas’ career total of event wins to 46. She is now tied for 12th on Florida’s Career Event Titles chart. She is the fourth to land on the chart as a sophomore.
Thomas’ all-around total equals the nation’s third-highest of 2020. Five of the season’s top 12 all-around totals belong to Thomas.
Florida’s 49.625 equals No. 3 on its all-time best beam totals chart. The Gators have scored a 49.5 or better on the event in its last four meets. The Gators last reached or surpassed 49.50 on beam in four consecutive meets in 2013.
Six marks tonight equaled or set collegiate bests:
On tonight’s win: “This team got better tonight. We had several lineup changes and some new people in. It was the first time I’ve really seen a strong start collectively from the bars team. They did a great job setting the tone and getting the momentum going. The rest of the team did a great job of continuing that momentum through. Saw a lot of aggressive performances tonight, which really just made for a great evening.” – Florida Head Coach Jenny Rowland
On how her second consecutive 10.0 felt and how her sophomore season is progressing: “This one felt so good. I landed that beam dismount and wow! That was probably one of the best routines I’ve done in competition. That was really exciting.
“I want to keep pushing. I’m not done yet and want to do so much more. I’m excited about what comes next.” – sophomore Trinity Thomas
On seeing Trinity Thomas getting another 10.0: “It’s always a joyful moment to see the athletes have such success and reap the benefits of their hard work. Getting a 10.0 on the last event on the road was special. I’m sure it was another routine for Trinity but really just goes to show she has a lot going for her.” – Florida Head Coach Jenny Rowland
On the team’s performance: “This team was on fire – absolutely. And the momentum was amazing. We just went one after another, doing great and hyping each other up. It was a lot of positive energy and so much fun.” – sophomore Trinity Thomas
The team added some hearts for Valentine’s Day into their floor and some of their beam routines tonight. Did you know that was going to happen? “I didn’t know that was going to happen, but it isn’t a surprise. That is something I love about this team. They are able to grab on to something and run with it. It’s all in a form of having so much fun about caring about each other.” – Florida Head Coach Jenny Rowland
NATIONAL RANK: Florida – Florida is No. 2 in the Road to Nationals standings. Auburn – The Tigers are No. 17 in the Road to Nationals rankings.
UP NEXT: It’s another top-10 match-up when No. 6 Alabama visits for the 14th edition of Gators Link to Pink. The teams put aside their school colors to wear pink to show their support for the fight against breast cancer.
When: Friday, Feb. 21 at 5:45 p.m. ET (Note the early start!) Venue: Exactech Arena at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center Television: SEC Network Video: SEC Network Promotions: First 3,000 fans get a Link to Pink t-shirt Gators Link to Pink poster available to first 1,000 Tickets: Reserved – $8 General admission – $5 (adult); $1 (youth 12 & under) UF Students w/ Gator1 ID – free FloridaGators.com/Tickets