Gymnastics looks to continue scoring top spots in individual events
Junior Anna Glenn notched a 9.875 on the uneven bars in the Bruins’ meet against Stanford on Sunday. UCLA gymnastics will continue its road trip as it heads to Oregon State on Saturday. (Liz Ketcham/Assistant Photo editor)
By Cassidy Hunt
Jan. 29, 2019 12:01 am
Although the Bruins rank third nationally, they have claimed the top spots in several individual events in the national rankings this season. No. 3 UCLA gymnastics won every event in its contest against No. 24 Stanford on Sunday, with leads ranging from .250 to 1.275 in each event. Stanford ranked in the top 15 last week on balance beam and floor exercise, but UCLA ranked in the top 10 in all four events.
“We don’t have to wait, we can be great every weekend,” said coach Valorie Kondos Field. “The intensity has been great, they just need to not second-guess themselves. I know they all can go out and hit 24 for 24 routines every time.”
Six UCLA gymnasts were ranked in the top 25 in the floor exercise last week. Senior Katelyn Ohashi went viral earlier this month for her perfect 10 floor routine and led the national rankings. Junior Kyla Ross and junior Gracie Kramer were tied for third, freshman Margzetta Frazier ranked seventh and sophomore Nia Dennis and sophomore Pauline Tratz ranked 25th.
Ross did not compete on floor Sunday, but the Bruins did manage to score a 49.350 in the event, besting the Cardinal by .25.
Junior Felicia Hano, who ranked 461st on floor last week, competed for the Bruins this weekend and tied for UCLA’s third-best floor routine of the night, scoring a 9.85.
“Before the floor event, (Hano) got them together and just said ‘Don’t let the scores determine our emotions and our joy of what we’ve done. It’s showtime on floor,'” Kondos Field said. “She said they were going to bring on a show, and they definitely did.”
As of Sunday night, UCLA athletes rank in the top three in two of the other three events. The Bruins rank third nationally on balance beam, and Ohashi leads the nation individually.
Freshman Norah Flatley said she works closely with her team every week so that they can all get their desired result as a group.
“I try to always focus on our performances and how we are doing as a team and I think that we all do really well,” Flatley said. “I’m always ready to move forward to the next weekend, so we can work on recovering, healing our bodies and being strong, together.”
UCLA ranks fifth on the uneven bars and sixth on vault. Ross is ranked No. 3 on uneven bars, while Frazier is tied for 17th.
Junior Anna Glenn said she is proud of her team’s rankings and focuses on them as inspiration to continue to land her routines.
“I feel like everyone goes out there with the intention of going all in and hitting their routines to the best of their ability,” Glenn said. “We do it all for the sake of the team, just so we can cultivate greater group and event scores.”
Kondos Field said the Bruins are able to rotate through events and step up when their team needs them because of their excellence in a range of routines.
“Everybody knows they’re going to hit,” Kondos Field said. “The questions always is, if everyone we have can score a 9.950 or a 10, who are you going to put up first?”
The Bruins will next face No. 20 Oregon State on Feb. 2.