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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – On the strength of the highest team score in the nation last week, the Alabama gymnastics team jumped four spots to No. 2 in the latest national rankings. The Crimson Tide is led by senior Ashley Priess, who holds down the nation’s No. 1 spot in the all-around, and its vault squad, which is once again ranked No. 1.
Utah is No. 1 again this week while Arkansas dropped from second to third. Florida also dropped a spot after last week’s loss to the Crimson Tide, settling in at No. 4 while Oklahoma rounds out the top five. Georgia checks in at No. 6, followed by No. 7 UCLA, No. 8 Nebraska, No. 9 Oregon State and No. 10 Penn State. Alabama’s next opponent, the Kentucky Wildcats, is just outside the top 25 at No. 26 this week.
In addition to being the nation’s highest score last week, Alabama’s 197.725 against the Gators is the second highest score in the nation this season. Ranked No. 1 on the vault for the third week in a row, the Tide is fifth on the floor exercise, sixth on the balance beam and 10th on the uneven bars.
Priess is No. 1 in the all-around after scoring a 39.550 against the Gators while junior Ashley Sledge checks in at No. 25 in the all-around this week. Priess is also fifth on the uneven bars, eighth on the balance beam and 21st on the vault, while Sledge is fifth on the vault and 23rd on the floor exercise.
Sophomore Diandra Milliner, who capped the Tide’s 49.600 on the vault last week with a perfect 10.0, is ranked 10th on the vault this week while senior Geralen Stack-Eaton, who scored a 10.0 on the vault in the first meet of the season, remains at No. 2 this week. Alabama’s vault total against the Gators is the highest in the nation this season. Milliner and Stack-Eaton are two of only three gymnasts in the nation to score a 10.0 this season.
Junior Marissa Gutierrez is ranked 12th on the vault after tying her career high of 9.95 against Florida. She is also 11th on the balance beam while sophomore Sarah DeMeo is 15th.
After taking on Kentucky in Lexington this Friday, Alabama returns home Friday, Feb. 17 against No. 3 Arkansas for the Tide’s eight annual Power of Pink meet. Tickets are available through the Alabama Ticket Office (205.348.2262) located in the lobby of Coleman Coliseum, and online at RollTide.com.
Christopher Walsh covers Alabama football for BamaOnline, 247Sports, and is the author of 18 books.
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