Feb. 1, 2014
ATHENS, Ga.----The No. 6 Gym Dogs continued their impressive home form this season with a 197.300-190.950 over the Kentucky Wildcats. Georgia recorded the top score on all four rotations with Lindsey Cheek's vault (9.95), bars (9.95) and beam (9.875) and Brandie Jay capping the meet with a 9.95 on floor led the way for the Gym Dogs.
Senior Lindsey Cheek was again the catalyst for the home team as she continued her outstanding start to the season as she stretched her season opening streak of receiving a 9.9 on higher on both vault and bars to six meets.
The Gym Dogs recorded a 49.425 on vault behind Cheek's 9.95 which set her season high and also tied her career high on the event. Cat Hires also recorded a 9.9 to propel Georgia. The Gym Dogs came out of the first rotation having opened a significant lead over the Wildcats who recorded a 47.325 on bars.
Ranked No. 1 in the country on bars, Georgia put forth another strong effort as it recorded a 49.450 on the event. The Gym Dogs were led by the gymnasts ranked second and third in the nation respectively on the event as second ranked Cheek recorded a 9.95 and third ranked Chelsea Davis notched a 9.925. Brandie Jay was the third Gym Dog receiving a bouquet as she scored a 9.9. Georgia stretched its lead at the half way point of the meet 98.875-96.175 as Kentucky scored a 48.800 on vault.
Cheek said the fact she performed as she did at home was an exciting experience.
"You can't really describe competing in Stegeman Coliseum, it's like no other," she said. "It's always exciting for us to get back in here and to put up 9.95's on vault and bars makes me really excited that I can continue to contribute to the team on those two events."
The Gym Dogs recorded a 49.150 on beam in the third rotation. More important than the score for the home team was the return of junior Sarah Persinger to the line-up after she missed the first five meets of the season after a nagging injury suffered in the preseason. Persinger recorded a respectable 9.775 in her return to the line-up. Georgia was led on the third rotation by Cheek who recorded a 9.875. Georgia continued to assert their dominance overall as the lead continued to grow to 148.025-145.225.
"Sarah I think added a nice boost. She's been working incredibly hard. I think it was important for us to make sure she was confident and she was ready. She showed that she was today," Durante said. "I think that that line up is strong. Really we are very strong and deep on beam. I like what I saw today."
The Gym Dogs finished the meet with a 49.275 on floor with Jay producing the high score of the rotation on the final routine. Kaylan Earls sparked the event with a lead off 9.9 score that featured all the Illinois native's usual energy and enthusiasm. It also was a season high for Earls while simultaneously tying her career high.
Brittany Rogers produced a 39.175 score for the all-around title.
Georgia will return to action on Friday night at 8:30 PM ET when it visits the Alabama Crimson Tide. No.7 Alabama will be the fifth top-10 opponent Georgia has faced this season. The Gym Dogs return home on Feb. 14 as they welcome Missouri to Stegeman Coliseum. The meet will serve as the annual `Pink Meet' for the Gym Dogs. For ticket information, visit Georgiadogs.com or call the UGA Ticket Office at 1-877-541-1231.