Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
We inform. You decide.
Friday, April 19, 2024

The injury bug didn't just bite the UF gymnastics team. It's setting up house.

UF dropped its last meet of the regular season in Salt Lake City to Utah 197.075 to 196 on Friday. The Gators (6-4, 3-3 Southeastern Conference) went into the meet with a depleted lineup, as has been the case all season long.

UF coach Rhonda Faehn said the injury situation this year is the worst since she's been coaching the Gators.

Already missing All-American Corey Hartung from the competitive lineups with a third-degree strain of the soleus muscle in her left calf, UF was dealt another blow when another All American, Amanda Castillo, stung her left ankle during her floor exercise.

Castillo, who has been nursing bursitis in her left ankle the whole season, returned to the all-around lineup Feb. 28 against Georgia and won the all-around title March 6 against Michigan.

Because she stung her ankle, Castillo was pulled from the balance beam lineup. Her unexpected absence seemingly left UF five gymnasts deep.

Then Ashley Kerr volunteered herself to provide the team a bit more room for error. She had a feeling the second she saw Castillo aggravate her ankle that Castillo may not be able to perform on beam, and Kerr stepped up.

Kerr and the rest of the beam lineup all hit their routines to finish out the meet with a 49.075, good for the Gators' highest event score at the meet. Kerr scored a 9.5 on beam while Alicia Goodwin, also filling in due to injuries, repeated for the second consecutive meet as the best UF beam performer with a 9.875 - the third-best score for the Gators all night.

The Gators managed good, not great, scores in their opening rotation on uneven bars -having a couple of erred landings - en route to a 48.85. Faehn said the scoring was a bit tight and not indicative of the performances.

All-American Melanie Sinclair led UF on bars with a 9.825 and was followed by a pair of 9.8s from Castillo and Elizabeth Mahlich.

From bars, the Gators went to vault, where Courtney Gladys captured the highest score for the team all night with her 9.925, a collegiate best vault score for Gladys.

On floor, UF saw Maranda Smith register the team's second-best score with her 9.9.

Enjoy what you're reading? Get content from The Alligator delivered to your inbox

The Gators finished the meet on beam with a lineup different than the one at the start of the meet with Kerr swapped in for Castillo.

"It's unfortunate that we change the lineup every week," Smith said. "We try and keep it the same so girls feel comfortable when they go up on each event. I think we've been doing really well with the changes. It's not what we would ultimately want, changing the lineup."

UF's No. 1 priority is to rest up the team and compete in the SEC Championships, starting March 21, with the healthiest team possible. The team hopes to have Hartung, at least on beam and bars, and Castillo back performing.

Support your local paper
Donate Today
The Independent Florida Alligator has been independent of the university since 1971, your donation today could help #SaveStudentNewsrooms. Please consider giving today.

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2024 The Independent Florida Alligator and Campus Communications, Inc.