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Gym Defeats Kentucky

Kennedi Edney announces her presence with authority


Kentucky is not one of the major powers of SEC gymnastics, but they are still one of the best teams in the nation this year. The Wildcats currently rank 6th in the nation, and they were playing host to LSU last weekend. While this wasn’t going to Tuscaloosa, this was a difficult road trip against a quality opponent.

LSU crushed them, 197.475-195.750. LSU has won four straight meets, none of them all that close, and have cleared 197 overall with ease in each of them. I want you to sit down for this, but I’m thinking LSU is pretty good this year.

Honestly, the meet was over after the first rotation. LSU opened up with a 49.350 on bars. The usually reliable Myia Hambrick had a rough go on the rotation in the second slot, but her teammates picked her up and closed things out with four straight big scores.

Meanwhile, Kentucky only managed a 48.575 on vault, a rotation on which you need a big score on. Instead, Kentucky had to carry three scores of a 9.700 or below. Their highest score on vault was a 9.850 by their anchor, Mollie Korth. No one else scored a 9.800.

You do that against a decent team, and your chances of winning take a severe hit. You do that against LSU, you are now praying for a miracle. The miracle never came. LSU only scored a 49.100 on the vault, as a Myia Hambrick fall prevented a scoreboard busting score.

That may have given Kentucky some degree of hope, as the Cats were down by 98.450-97.700 at the halfway point, but that hope was illusory. LSU crushed the final two rotations, a 49.550 on floor and a 49.475 on beam. Kentucky simply couldn’t keep up.

As you can tell, Myia Hambrick, who has been LSU’s best all-around gymnast this season, had a rough night. She recovered in the second half of the meet, but her first two rotations prevented her from any shot at winning the all around again.

You would have expected Ashleigh Gnat to step through that open door and seize the title. And Gnat had a terrific meet, scoring 9.925 on vault, 9.900 on floor, and 9.850 on beam. What she did not do is score on the bars, as DD Breaux decided to lighten Gnat’s workload this weekend.

Instead, freshman Kennedi Edney took advantage of her opportunity and she won her first all-around title of the season. She cleared 9.900 on three of the four rotations, and she posted the highest score on two rotations: beam and bar.

Her 9.950 beam score was simply unassailable, and it was the final performance which secured the title. She scored a 9.925 on the bars, which tied Lexie Priessman for the event high score.

So not only did LSU thoroughly dominate one of the best teams in the nation, it did so with one of the team’s best gymnasts having a bad night. Breaux asked the underclassmen to carry the team on Friday night, and they came through in a big way. This is precisely the sort of thing you want to see, on any night, anyone can be the star.

Or in this case, they can be dragons. #DrgnSzn