The No. 7 Georgia Gym Dawgs fell to No. 8 Michigan in their first meet of the season, 196.600-195.600, on Saturday afternoon in front of a sellout crowd of 10,224 at Stegeman Coliseum.
“We have work to do,” head coach Danna Durante said. “I think the highlight of the meet was certainly Sarah Persinger back in the lineup. She competed three events and one exhibition. It was good to see, but we absolutely have a lot of work to do. The thing about this team is that they are not afraid to work hard. We’re going to make some big strides pretty quickly this week. We have to be tougher. We can’t be tentative or timid. We have to come out and fight.”
The Gymdogs opened with a 49.000 on bars, highlighted by an event-high score of 9.925 by Brandie Jay in the closing spot. Freshman Natalie Vaculik added a 9.825 in her first career vault. The Wolverines posted a score of 49.025 on bars.
Chelsea Davis and Kiera Brown led Georgia’s campaign on bars, each earning a score of 9.875. Brittany Rogers added a 9.85 to give the Gymdogs a 49.125 on the event. With Michigan’s 49.325 on vault, the Wolverines led 98.350-98.125 after two rotations.
On beam, Mary Beth Box and Vivi Babalis posted team-best scores of 9.850. Georgia earned a 48.925 on the event, while Michigan tallied a score of 49.150 on floor.
In the final rotation, Brown kicked Georgia off on floor with a 9.850. Persinger and Jay added a par of 9.825s, giving the Gymdogs an event score of 48.550. The Wolverines closed the meet with a 49.100 on beam.
“Tonight was a really big learning experience for all of us,” Persinger said “I think we’re going to take a lot out of tonight, learn from our mistakes, keep improving, remember the things that we did well and build on that. Really it can only go up from here.”
Georgia will return to action on Friday to face Missouri at 7 p.m. in Stegeman Coliseum. The meet will be broadcast on SEC Network+.
1. Michigan – 196.600 (VT- 49.325, UB- 49.025, BB- 49.100, FX- 49.150)
2. Georgia – 195.600 (VT- 49.000, UB- 49.125, BB- 48.925, FX- 48.550)
Sarah Persinger – 9.800, Natalie Vaculik – 9.825, Beth Roberts – 9.725, Gigi Marino – 9.725, Ashlyn Broussard – 9.725, Brandie Jay – 9.925
Brandie Jay – 9.750, Natalie Vaculik – 9.775, Rachel Schick – 9.075, Kiera Brown – 9.875, Brittany Rogers – 9.85, Chelsea Davis – 9.875
Mary Beth Box – 9.850, Natalie Vaculik – 9.600, Sarah Persinger – 9.800, Ashlyn Broussard – 9.750, Vivi Babalis – 9.850, Kiera Brown – 9.675
Kiera Brown – 9.850, Sarah Persinger – 9.825, Mary Beth Box – 9.050, Ashlyn Broussard – 9.275, Vivi Babalis – 9.775, Brandie Jay – 9.825