MORGANTOWN, W. Va. – The Ohio State women’s gymnastics team earned a spot in tomorrow’s NCAA Regional Final after coming in second with a team score of 196.525 in the first session of the Morgantown Regional Second Round. No. 5 Cal finished first (197.725) and will also take part in Saturday’s quad meet.
The Buckeyes saved their best performance for the postseason as they registered a season-high 196.525 against Cal, No. 12 BYU and Towson. It is also the 10th-highest score in program history.
Ohio State is making its first appearance in the Sweet 16 since the NCAA implemented its new regional format in 2019.
“It was a team effort from the very beginning to the very last routine,” said head coach Meredith Paulicivic. “We needed to start off strong, have fun and fight for one another, which is exactly what this team did. It was amazing to see how all their hard work paid off on one of the biggest stages. I couldn’t be prouder of them.”
Ohio State started the competition on floor, where it scored a 49.150. Alexis Hankins matched her career high on a 9.900 to tie for second place. Claire Gagliardi was the next highest scorer for the Buckeyes with a 9.875 and Lexi Edwards tied her career mark at 9.850.
The team headed to vault for the next rotation. The Buckeyes posted a 49.025 on the event to jump BYU and move in to second in the overall standings. Edwards earned a 9.850 to tie for third place and Sydney Jennings scored a 9.825. Jenna Swartzentruber and Morgan Lowe had a pair of 9.800s.
Colby Miller led the Buckeyes on bars with a new personal best of 9.925, which tied for third. Swartzentruber put up a 9.875 while Emma Pritchard and Hankins both notched a 9.800. The squad had an event score of 49.175.
Ohio State put up a solid 49.175 during its final rotation on beam to secure its top-two finish. Ella Hodges placed fifth with a score of 9.875. Miller and Swartzentruber earned a pair of 9.850s.
When the Buckeyes return to WVU Coliseum on Saturday at 7 p.m., they will begin the night on beam and rotate to floor, vault and bars. The top-two teams from tonight’s evening session between Michigan, UCLA, Kent State and West Virginia will join Ohio State and Cal in the fight for a spot in the national championship.