Florida Gators gymnastics enter the toughest meet of their season Friday night against the Oklahoma Sooners.
The two teams are regular opponents. However, it’s been five years (to date) since each team held the No. 1 and No. 2 ranked spots, which makes for a highly contentious matchup.
Five years later, a long-standing No. 1 v. No. 2 ranked rivalry will be renewed.
The Challenge Ahead
Each team is high off of a perfect season start. But Oklahoma has consistently topped the 2019 team totals, and ranks no. 1 in vault and beam. While the Gators only sit behind at second in beam, vault has been the toughest event for the Gators thus far.
The Gators are ranked No. 10 in the NCAA. Trinity Thomas and Alicia Boren lead the Gators with scores of 9.875. For a No. 2 ranked team, that’s a major weakness. Meanwhile, Oklahoma junior Maggie Nichols has posted a perfect 10 and leads in vault standings. Nichols also leads Oklahoma in beam, with a 9.975. Their dominance on these particular events could potentially lead to trouble for the Gators.
Ahead of the meet, head coach Jenny Rowland said the team looks to “better ourselves Friday night, and see what we can do to improve upon our last.”
But the Sooners seek redemption after losing down the stretch in last year’s meet at Florida. Florida edged Oklahoma out in a nail-biting 198.125-198.150 win. At the time, Florida was ranked No. 5, but Oklahoma was ranked No. 1.
Awards Upon Awards
Two Florida gymnasts highlighted the SEC Gymnasts of the Week list. Freshman Trinity Thomas earned SEC Gymnast of the Week. In last week’s home win against Kentucky, Thomas earned the highest total for the week at 39.70. Sophomore Megan Skaggs earned SEC Specialist of the Week. She tied for second and third with her performances on bars and beam, respectively.
Catch the Action
The No. 1 vs. No. 2 duel meet kicks off 7:45 p.m. EST.