The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference
The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference

Gators advance to national championship

98 days ago
Florida Athletics
Photo: Florida Athletics

FORT WORTH, Texas - The goal for Friday was clear - put the Gators in position to challenge for a NCAA Gymnastics team title.

Florida met that goal, moving ahead to Saturday's NCAA Championship team final. The Gators' runner-up finish in the opening NCAA Gymnastics Championships semifinal Friday at Dickies Arena claimed one of the two semifinals' advancing positions.

The top-seeded Gators look for their fourth NCAA Championship in Saturday's NCAA team final, which airs live on ABC beginning at 3:30 p.m. ET.

Florida was second Friday in its NCAA semifinal at 197.4375. Michigan won the semifinal at 197.8625.

Rounding out the opening semifinal results were California (197.3625) and Minnesota (197.1875).

Notes:

The Gators showed there is potential to add to Friday's team score in Saturday's final as several tenths were left on the competition floor.

Florida opened on uneven bars and the bounces on landings kept the score down. Senior Megan Skaggs' 9.8875 shared seventh in the semifinal and earned her All-America second-team honors.

Florida were steely on balance beam, as the final five performers hit their routines after the Gators' opening performer recorded a miss. Junior Trinity Thomas' 9.9125 led the Gators and tied for fifth to earn All-America second team accolades.

All of Florida's floor scores used toward its meet-high 49.5875 total were a 9.90 or better. It was a three-way tie at 9.925 for top Gator floor score honors - senior Alyssa Baumann and juniors Nya Reed and Thomas. They all picked up All-America second team honors for floor.

Florida needed a solid performance on its finishing event, vault, to claim an advancing position. A couple of low landings added a bit to the day's drama, but the Gators completed the rotation with its goal in hand - an advancing position to Saturday's team final. Reed's 9.90 tied for second overall and earned All-America first team accolades. Skaggs shared fifth at 9.875 to also claim All-America second-team honors.

Skaggs and Thomas both claimed All-America second-team honors in the all-around. Thomas took fifth in the opening semifinal at 39.5625 and Skaggs was seventh at 39.55.

WORTH NOTING

  • Florida advances to its 17th NCAA team final (1994, 1997, 1998, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2021). Florida won NCAA team titles in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
  • Thomas, the nation's top-ranked all-arounder, was making her first all-around appearance since the home finale on Feb. 26, 2021 - a span of 49 days. An ankle sprain while warming up uneven bars at Alabama for the regular-season finale has limited Thomas to just uneven bars at the Southeastern Conference Championships meet and NCAA Regionals.
  • As the runner-up team in Semifinal I, Florida opens final competition on balance beam.

UP NEXT:

Florida looks for NCAA Championships Title IV in the NCAA team final Saturday afternoon.

The event airs live on ABC. It is believed to be the first NCAA women's team final airing on a broadcast network since CBS aired Connecticut claiming its first NCAA basketball title with a win over Tennessee in the 1995 NCAA Women's title game.