PROVO, Utah — The Blue team defeated the White squad to claim a 152.200-151.675 win in BYU gymnastics’ Blue & White intrasquad meet Friday night at the Smith Fieldhouse.
The intrasquad meet format counted the top four scores instead of regular competition’s top five scores.
“Competing in front of the fans and being out here where we’re going to compete this season was a huge indicator of the girls' progress. I think some girls rose and some girls sank,” BYU head coach Guard Young said. “It’s a mental game at this point. They can all do the gymnastics in practice, but they’ve got to do it out here when it counts.”
The Blue team began its first rotation on vault, finishing with a 38.475 advantage to the White team’s 37.725. Freshman Angel Zhong led the Blue team with a 9.775 on vault while sophomore Cheyenne Hill scored a 9.675 on bars.
Hill also led the White team on vault with a career-high 9.825 in the second rotation to give her squad a 76.350-76.225 lead. Jill Van Mierlo earned the highest Blue score on bars, posting a 9.700.
Blue regained the lead in the third rotation on beam, 114.800-113.775. Zhong and fellow freshman Briana Pearson led the team with scores of 9.725 and 9.675, respectively.
“I’m really happy to see Angel win beam,” Young said. “I think she really showed her strength there.”
For the White team, junior Mackenzie Douglas earned a 9.725 on floor to round out the third rotation.
The Blue team maintained its lead in the final rotation, 152.200-151.675 with Pearson scoring a 9.475 on floor while Hill put up a 9.600 on beam for White.
Hill earned the all-around title with a score of 38.700, followed by Van Mierlo’s 38.175.
“Cheyenne Hill is someone who came back and did the all-around and won it outright. That really, really impressed me,” Young said. “Jill struggled with injuries all last year so to see her back out in the all-around is a big plus for us.”
The Cougars begin their season with a quad meet against Penn State, Bowling Green and Temple on Saturday, Jan. 7 in University Park, PA. The meet will begin at 2 p.m. MST.
PROVO, UTAH — The 2016-17 BYU gymnastics team will make its debut in the Blue and White intrasquad meet this Friday, Dec. 9, at 6 p.m. MST, in the Smith Fieldhouse.
“We’re not peaking for the Blue and White. We’re actually finishing our hardest training week the week of the Blue and White. We’re training though it and we’re using it as an opportunity to train,” BYU head coach Guard Young said. “I don’t know if the polish, hits and sticks will be there, but it’s forcing these girls to do their gymnastics out on the hard floor and vault on the hard mats.”
This year’s team features 10 returners, eight incoming freshmen and one redshirt freshman. The gymnasts will be divided into a blue and white team with each team led by one or two captains. Mackenzie Douglas and Jessie Westergard will captain the white team and compete along with Cheyenne Hill, Taylor Harward, Natasha Trejo, Savanna Maradiaga, Hannah Miller, Macie Miller and Emily Cannon.
“My goal is to create the competition spirit amongst our team,” Young said. “We really do treat it like it’s a meet. It’s a blue team versus a white team. It’s not player versus player, trying to beat them out for a roster spot. This gives every girl the opportunity to compete.”
Last year, BYU qualified to compete in the NCAA Regionals, where the team finished in sixth place. They look to build on the coaching staff’s first year as they introduce new gymnasts in Hilton, Hortman, Love, H. Miller, M. Miller, Pearson and Zhong. Returners Hawes, Douglas, Trejo and Westergard are expected to be powerful forces for the Cougars.
Admission will be free to the public.