TEMPE, Ariz. - The No. 14 Auburn gymnastics team opened 2018 at the Arizona State Quad Meet Saturday afternoon in Wells Fargo Arena and came away in third with a 193.950.
Iowa State captured the meet with a 195.175, while host Arizona State came in second at 194.675. The Iowa Hawkeyes had a 193.000 for fourth.
"We had quite a few new routines and we wanted to use this meet to get experience, to get out on the floor, and to do gymnastics in a completely different environment," head coach Jeff Graba said. "I know the score wasn't what we wanted, but I was excited to see the fight in this team and to see the young people step up and do a good job. We just need to put this behind us and get started again for our home meet next week."
Fifteen of Auburn's 24 routines came from sophomores and freshmen, while a freshman led off three of four events for the Tigers.
Newcomer Drew Watson opened the meet as leadoff on bars, earning a 9.8 for her routine. Junior Samantha Cerio highlighted the event as she picked up her first title of the season with a 9.9. Sophomores Kendal Moss and Katie Becker put together a 9.775 and a 9.75, respectively, while sophomore Gracie Day and redshirt junior Abby Milliet finished with a pair of 9.2s.
The Tigers moved to beam for the second rotation where freshman Allie Riddle kicked things off with a 9.775. Redshirt sophomore Emma Slappey led all Tigers with a 9.825 to come in a tie for third overall and junior Taylor Krippner earned a 9.75. Cerio followed with a 9.725 and Becker capped the scoring with a 9.65.
Milliet concluded her day in the anchor spot on floor and finished with a team-best 9.8. Cerio earned a 9.775 for her performance and sophomores Becker and Slappey totaled a 9.675 each. Freshman Ashley Smith added to the team score with a 9.05 in the leadoff slot.
Auburn concluded the meet with a solid showing on vault, seeing a pair of newcomers lead the way. Watson took home the event tile with a 9.875, while classmate Jada Glenn capped the evening with a 9.8. Day ended her full meet on a high note, earning a 9.775. Krippner had a 9.7 and Becker finished with a 9.675.
The Tigers kick off their strong home schedule with an SEC meet Friday, Jan. 12, hosting No. 17 Missouri in Auburn Arena. The two Tiger squads will go head-to-head at 7 p.m. CT on SEC Network+.