Senior Dayna Smart-Allen will help lead the Cougar team in their meet against Utah on Friday evening. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
PROVO -- The No. 36 BYU gymnastics team will go head-to-head with No. 2 Utah in the first home meet of the season on Friday at 7 p.m., as part of the Deseret Duel Rivalry Series.
"What we're attempting to do is score the highest we can," said BYU head coach Brad Cattermole. "I am looking forward to this meet to see how well the gymnasts perform. We are getting better and better."
Last week the Cougars scored 193.350 in a quad meet against in-state foe Southern Utah, Boise State and CS Fullerton, but plan to improve the already solid team score. BYU plans to keep progressing throughout the season. On Friday, five Cougar gymnasts surpassed career-best scores in at least one event.
"We are trying to improve every meet we go to," Cattermole said. "We are continuing to get some of the girls back and healthy. That and continually progressing is what I am concerned with the most."
Senior Dayna Smart-Allen will help lead the Cougars in their goal of improving performance. After only competing in one meet this season, Smart-Allen is ranked No. 14 on beam and No. 21 on the vault. On bars, senior Kylee Draper-Marvin also proved her strength grabbing a No. 22 national ranking on the event.
Friday's meet marks the first time BYU and Utah gymnastics teams have met under the newly created Deseret Duel series, but this actually is the 83rd time the two teams have met in program history. The Utes hold an 80-2 advantage in the series. The last time the Cougars topped the Utes was in 1998 in the Marriott Center.
Cattermole, though, said he is not focusing on the much talked about in-state rival. He is focused simply on his team's performance on Friday.
"I don't really pay that much attention who we are going against from week to week," Cattermole said. "It is more important to me how we score because that is how you get to Regionals and Nationals. There is no defense to get them off of their game. We just want to do the best we can."
The meet will be held in the Marriott Center. Fans who are not able to attend can watch the action live on BYU-TV or keep up with scores through live stats found at http://www.byucougars.com/Schedule.jsp?SP=152&YR=2007.