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Georgia Gym Dogs 196.85, L.S.U. Tigers 195.95

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Now that’s more like it. Following a less than stellar opening effort against West Virginia, the Gym Dogs fell from No. 1 to No. 8 in the rankings, but the Red and Black righted the ship with a solid win over a good Louisiana State gymnastics squad.

Georgia opened the meet on the parallel bars while their hosts in Baton Rouge began with the vault. Courtney Kupets’s 9.925 in the first rotation paced a 49.175 effort by the visitors, who trailed L.S.U. after the initial stanza, thanks to Ashleigh Clare-Kearney’s 9.95. A quarter of the way through the meet, the home team led, having posted a 49.225.

The Bulldogs took the lead in the second rotation, where Kupets carded a 9.95 and Tiffany Tolnay notched a 9.9 to earn a 49.3 team tally on the vault. Louisiana State put together a cumulative 48.975 score on the bars after none of the local gymnasts earned above a 9.875 for the event.

After having taken a 98.475-98.2 lead at the halfway point, Georgia extended its advantage to 147.55-147 in the third rotation. Kupets (9.875) and Cassidy McComb (9.825) paced a Red and Black effort yielding a 49.075 mark in the floor exercise while L.S.U. netted only a 48.8 on the balance beam.

The Gym Dogs posted a strong finish in the meet’s final frame, in which Kupets (9.9), Hilary Mauro (9.85), McComb (9.825), Tolnay (9.85), and Grace Taylor (9.875) all turned in solid performances en route to a 49.3 score on the beam. The host squad’s performance on the floor produced only a 48.95 mark.

Thanks to Courtney Kupets’s 39.65 score to capture her second straight all-around title, the Red and Black cruised to a 196.85-195.95 victory in their conference opener. The Gym Dogs’ turnaround time between meets will be brief, as Georgia hosts Utah in Athens at 4:00 this Monday afternoon, January 19.

Go ‘Dawgs!