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Press Release: WVU Heads to No. 3 Oklahoma for Nationally Televised Meet

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (Jan. 30, 2021) – The West Virginia University gymnastics team heads to Norman, Oklahoma, for a nationally televised meet against No. 3 Oklahoma on Sunday, Jan. 31, inside the Lloyd Noble Center. Competition is set to begin at 8 p.m. ET on ESPNU.

Direct links to the video stream and live stats can be found on the gymnastics schedule page atWVUsports.com.

“We’re looking to build on what we did with Oklahoma at the Coliseum last weekend,” Mountaineer coach Jason Butts said. “We want to improve our score, and we want to hit 24-for-24 routines. We were almost there last weekend. We just have to clean up a lot of stuff. We gave away a lot of tenths in landings, handstands, little bobbles, feet sliding here and there on floor, so we have a lot of improvement in the little areas that we can make.

“Obviously, we already have seen Oklahoma. The team is excited to go out there and travel, and I’m looking for some good things while we are out there. We have potential to get a great road score, we just have to hit and do our thing.”

West Virginia is looking for its first conference regular-season win since Feb. 26, 2017, when the Mountaineers defeated Iowa State by a score of 195.95-195.725 in Morgantown. WVU is 1-20 all-time against OU.

West Virginia opened its 2021 season with a 196.100-194.900 loss to then-No. 2 Oklahoma on Jan. 22, inside the WVU Coliseum, in Morgantown. Despite the loss, the Mountaineers hit 23-for-24 routines to split the event titles, finishing first on balance beam (48.825-48.625) and floor exercise (48.900-48.775), while the Sooners earned the vault (49.325-48.575) and uneven bars (49.375-48.600) team victories.

Sophomore Emily Holmes-Hackerd finished second in the all-around with a score of 38.65. The meet marked her career debut in the all-around, as she also competed on vault and bars for the first time. Senior McKenna Linnen and junior Kendra Combs also landed on the podium in their season debuts, scoring matching 9.85s on floor to tie for third overall.

Eleven Mountaineers earned time in at least one lineup last week, with five gymnasts competing in three or more events. Currently, a freshman or sophomore is projected to compete in 13 of the Mountaineers’ 24 lineup positions for this weekend’s meet. 

Holmes-Hackerd paces the team with 38.65 season points, followed by Combs with 29.4. Linnen ranks third with 29.3, while sophomores Kianna Yancey and Abbie Pierson round out the top five with 29.225 and 28.65 points, respectively.

The Sooners rank No. 3 in the nation with a 196.858 season average after three weeks of competition. Last weekend, senior Evy Schoepfer took home the vault title with a 9.925 score, while freshman Audrey Davis earned the title on bars with a 9.9 mark. Senior Anastasia Webb earned three event titles, sharing beam and floor with sophomore Ragan Smith, as they tallied matching 9.925s on each event. Webb also took home the all-around title with a 39.575.

Press Release Courtesy of West Virginia University Athletics Communications

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