No. 20 Missouri gymnastics takes second at Mardi Gras Invitational over two ranked opponents

The Tigers recorded season-high scores in both the beam and the vault.

No. 20-ranked Missouri gymnastics demonstrated excellence on the beam that powered the team to a second-place finish at the Mardi Gras Invitational in St. Charles, Missouri, on Friday.

Missouri’s score of 196.025 was bested by No. 4 LSU but beat out No. 8 Arkansas as well as No. 21 George Washington.

Because of the unusual format of the four-team meet, the Tigers’ first rotation was the beam, and its 49.375 was a season high in any event for the team. Missouri’s lowest-scoring routine was a 9.8 and junior Britney Ward’s 9.95 became the team’s joint-highest scoring individual routine this season.

The Tigers also shined in the vault, where Ward and sophomore Aspen Tucker provided two more of Missouri’s four scores of at least 9.9 on the night. The team posted a season-high score of 49.25 in the rotation.

Missouri struggled the most on the bars, where the team had two falls from junior Brooke Kelly and redshirt sophomore Morgan Porter.

In the end, all of the individual honors were swept by LSU, but Missouri can still take pride in its second-place finish over two ranked teams. The Tigers’ record is now 3-5, and they are yet to face an unranked opponent this season.

“We counted a fall on bars, which obviously we're not happy about, but I did think we made really great strides in a lot of areas,” head coach Shannon Welker said in a press release. “We stuck five out of six dismounts on beam today; that was a really great beam rotation. There were a lot of great things happening and we'll put it together. Good things are on the horizon.”

Missouri’s next meet is at Kentucky on Feb. 23 at 6 p.m.

Edited by Joe Noser |

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