Special report on the Florida Gators gymnastics team:
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – No. 2 Florida at No. 1 Oklahoma is the nation’s top dual gymnastics meet of the season. Action begins at 9 p.m. ET Friday in the Lloyd Noble Center<https://soonersports.com/sports/2019/8/9/208803893>.
The Gators competed in the nation’s top meet of the day in each of the first two months of the season – defeating No. 5 Auburn 197.825 – 197.20 on Jan. 13 and nipped at No. 8 Louisiana State 198.10 – 197.975 on Feb. 17.
No. 1 vs No 2
Friday is the 23rd meeting between No. 1 and No. 2 in dual meet action since 1995.
Florida’s been involved in six of the 10 duals featuring the top ranked teams since 2007.
Florida is 2-2-1 in a No. 1 vs No. 2 dual since 2007.
How to Follow the Gators:
Follow the action live:
* ESPN2<https://www.espn.com/watch/player/_/id/41603398-afc2-4e7c-a8ec-2a6f230d1f8e> Olympic medalists Bart Conner, Kathy Johnson-Clarke and Samantha Peszek call the action
* Live scores<http://stats.statbroadcast.com/broadcast/?id=439525>
Last Friday, Florida’s Senior Night included an Orange & Blue confetti shower to celebrate the Gators fifth consecutive Southeastern Conference regular-season title<https://floridagators.com/news/2023/2/24/gymnastics-no-2-gators-claim-fifth-straight-sec-title-with-win-over-no-12-kentucky.aspx>. The meet featured the league’s remaining teams with a single SEC loss as Kentucky was looking for a win to keep hopes for its first SEC gymnastics title alive. Florida posted its second-highest total of the season to take a 198.15 – 197.575 win over the Wildcats.
Super Senior Trinity Thomas won her 30th career all-around (39.70) and used a near-perfect 9.975 to win floor exercise. Florida’s 49.80 on uneven bars set the program’s event record and is the nation’s highest on any event in 2023. Marks of 9.925 or higher contributed to the event record total, including a trio with a near perfect 9.975s to win the title – Kayla DiCello, Thomas and Leanne Wong. DiCello shared the balance beam win at 9.925 with UK’s Raena Worley. The vault title was shared at 9.95 by UK’s Isabella Magnelli and Worley.
Oklahoma’s 198.575 versus West Virginia last Friday is the nation’s high team total for 2023. Every Sooner event total was 49.625 or higher.<https://soonersports.com/news/2023/2/24/womens-gymnastics-ou-soars-with-school-record-198-575-in-win-over-west-virginia> Two Sooners posted 10.0s in the home win – Katherine Levasseur (vault) and Jordan Bowers (floor). Defending NCAA champion Oklahoma has turned in a team total of 198-plus in each of the last five meets, including three of the nation’s top five total of 2023 (No. 1 198.575 on Feb. 24; No. 3 198.425 on Jan. 29; No. 5 198.325 on Feb. 19).
February Sweep for SEC Freshman of Week Honors for Kayla DiCello
This is beginning to be a trend. Kayla DiCello earned her fourth consecutive SEC Freshman Gymnast of the Week honor after leading the league’s freshmen with her all-around total of 39.60<https://floridagators.com/news/2023/2/28/gymnastics-february-sec-freshman-of-week-sweep-for-floridas-kayla-dicello.aspx>. This is DiCello’s seventh SEC Weekly honor as she is a six-time Freshman of the Week and Week 2 Specialist Gymnast of the Week. The six SEC Freshman of the Week honors matches the season record set by teammate Trinity Thomas in 2019.
Last UF-OU Dual Meet:
When these two teams last met in dual meet action, Florida built on a midpoint lead to post a 198.10 – 197.75 win over No. 2 Oklahoma to close 2022 home action.<https://floridagators.com/news/2022/2/25/gymnastics-no-3-gators-wins-over-no-2-oklahoma-on-senior-night.aspx> Florida’s Trinity Thomas claimed at least a share of each of the five event titles for the second event sweep of her career. Her all-around total (39.85) stood at that time as the nation’s 2022 leader. She shared the vault win at 9.925 with freshman Sloane Blakely and OU’s Jordan Bowers and Danielle Sievers. Megan Skaggs shared the uneven bars with Thomas at 9.95. Thomas used a near-perfect 9.975 for the balance beam win and posted a 10.0 on floor exercise to close the evening.