No. 12 BYU notches highest score since 2004 on Senior Night
PROVO, Utah – On Senior Night, No. 12 BYU celebrated its highest score since 2004, a 197.300, against No. 11 Denver on Thursday in the Marriott Center.
The Cougars narrowly fell to the Pioneers by a mere .075 as Denver posted a 197.375. In addition achieving the team's season-high team score, BYU notched season-high scores on both beam and floor during the competitive, crowd-pleasing meet.
“We'll take that score,” head coach Guard Young said. “That’s our highest score since I've been the coach. We accomplished a 197 at home. We've been doing that on the road, so I'm super happy. It’s a great send off and a great tribute to our seniors. Every meet that we've had this year has been a privilege and this just topped it.”
A highlight included senior Abbey Miner-Alder competing in the all-around for the fourth time this season, achieving a new career-high of 39.525.
To start off the night, BYU headed to vault where it racked up a 49.175. Four Cougars snagged a 9.825, including freshman Allix Mason and seniors Haley Pitou, Angel Zhong, Avery Bennett. Competing in the all-around for the fourth time this season, senior Abbey Miner-Alder led the pack by tying her career-high score of 9.875. After the first rotation, Denver led by .250, after Lynnzee Brown and Jessica Hutchinson kicked off the meet with impressive scores of 9.950 on the uneven bars.
In the second rotation, the Cougars made a comeback, notching their eighth-highest bars score in program history, a 49.375. This is the second time this season BYU put up this tally. The seniors racked up impressive scores. Helody Cyrenne celebrated a season-high score of 9.925. Abby Boden-Stainton followed with a 9.900 and Pitou achieved a 9.875. At the halfway point, the Cougars traded places, gaining a .250 lead over the Pioneers, 98.550-98.300.
BYU’s momentum carried into the third rotation, notching another season-high tally for the night, a 49.400 on beam. This is the program’s highest score on the apparatus since 2005 and ranks as the fifth highest in program history. Stainton led with a 9.925, her season-high score. Freshman Elease Rollins and Alder followed with solid scores of 9.900. Even with Denver’s massive 49.500 score on floor the Cougars maintained their lead, 147.950-147.800.
In the final rotation, BYU earned a 49.350 on floor. Junior Brittney Vitkauskas and Alder put up 9.900 scores, the highest in the lineup. Currently, the two are the top-ranked floor performers in the Mountain Rim Gymnastics Conference. Senior Jordan Danbury-Matthews followed with her career-high score of 9.875. In the end, Denver came from behind with another impressive tally, a 49.575 on beam. This would give the Pioneers the final edge over the Cougars.
Denver’s Brown took home the all-around title, achieving a 39.775.
To finish off the night, the crowd celebrated BYU’s seven seniors: Abbey Miner-Alder, Avery Bennett, Helody Cyrenne, Jordan Danbury-Matthews, Haley Pitou, Abby Boden-Stainton and Angel Zhong.
“They're leaving big shoes to fill next year,” Young said. “You know, they can be proud of the program that they built. They can be proud of the program that they're leaving behind for these young ones that come in.”
Next week, BYU heads to Logan, Utah, for the MRGC Championships on Saturday, March 20.