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Four SEC gymnasts claim individual national titles

92 days ago
SEC Staff
Photo: SEC

LSU Tigers

Senior Sarah Finnegan and junior Kennedi Edney captured the program's 14th and 15th individual championships with wins on bars and vault at the NCAA Gymnastics Championships Friday.

Finnegan became a two-time NCAA champion after her 9.95 performance in NCAA Semifinal I. The Lee's Summit, Missouri, native also won the NCAA bars championship in 2017 when she became the first LSU gymnast to win a title on the event. With the victory, Finnegan earned her 45th win of the season to pass Susan Jackson and Sandra Smith for the most in a season in school history.

Edney became a two-time NCAA champion after earning a 9.95 in the anchor spot of vault in NCAA Semifinal I. Edney also won the NCAA vault championship in 2017 when she became the first freshman to win a title.

LSU gymnasts have combined to win 15 individual championships, including 14 since 2002. Finnegan and Edney joined Rheagan Courville, Susan Jackson and Ashleigh Clare-Kearney as the only gymnasts in school history to win multiple national championships.

Auburn Tigers

Freshman Derrian Gobourne did something no Auburn gymnast has done before Friday night. The Sarasota, Fla., product finished in a tie for first on vault with a 9.95 at the NCAA Women's Gymnastics National Championship to win the program's first-ever national title.

"We are so proud of Derrian," head coach Jeff Graba said. "This meet is extremely tough to be your best at with the intense pressure and not having a team here to vocally support you. To perform at her highest in this meet says volumes about Derrian's competitive spirit. She deserves this national recognition and we are so happy for her."

Gobourne's 9.95 tied a career high set on the first day of the NCAA Baton Rouge Regional two weeks ago. That score advanced Gobourne to the national meet.

"It still hasn't hit me yet," Gobourne said. "I can't wait to bring this championship back to my team and can't wait to be here next year with all of them."

In addition, Gobourne becomes the third Tiger to earn All-America honors in the event - Julie Dwyer (2005, 2008), Caitlin Atkinson (2013). She garnered first team recognition for her finish.

Florida Gators

Florida senior Alicia Boren earned a share of the NCAA Gymnastics Championships' floor exercise title in Friday's competition. Boren posted a 9.95 for her signature event in the first rotation of NCAA Semifinal II competition and that score held as the overall floor high through the remaining three rotations.

Boren's Title Notes

  • Boren is the third Gator to win the NCAA floor title, joining Maria Anz (1984) and Kytra Hunter (2015)
  • Nine Gators have won 20 NCAA Individual titles in the program's history
  • Florida is the nation's only team to claim a NCAA Individual title each of the last eight seasons. This was the Gators' 15th win in that span.
  • Boren finishes her Gator career with 52 event wins (17 / senior; 15 / junior; 13 / sophomore; 7 / freshman) Every floor mark for Boren in 2019 was a 9.9 or better. This was her sixth floor title of the season and the 17th of her Gator career.