DAVIS, Calif. - Both junior Alexis Brown and UC Davis as a team tied respective school records on the balance beam, helping UC Davis to a season-best 195.775 in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation women's gymnastics meet at the Pavilion Friday night. Visiting Air Force scored 193.350 in the meet.
The Aggies, winners of their ninth straight meet, improve to a school-record 16-4 dual record. The overall score ranks fifth in school history and tied for 10th in MPSF annals.
Brown posted a 9.900 on balance beam in the third rotation to tie the school record for a third time and helped UC Davis match its team and conferenc benchmark of 49.175. She remains the only gymnast in school history to hit that mark more than once. The junior from Huntington Beach also won the individual vault with a 9.825 score, and bested the 39-point barrier in the all-around for the fifth time in 2017, winning the race at 39.050.
Senior Rachel Kreager won the individual bars with a career-high 9.875, while sophomore Yasmine Yektaparast captured the floor competition with a similar mark of 9.875.
In fact, UC Davis placed at least three gymnasts among the top three on all four events. Senior Yonni Michovska placed second on both vault (9.800) and bars (9.850). Junior Miranda Holder tied for third on each of vault (9.750) and bars (9.800). Kreager tied sophomore teammate Aya Suzuki for third place on beam at 9.825. Sophomore Kara Jones match Holder on vault, Yektaparast was second to Brown in the beam race at 9.850, junior Amanda Presswood runnered up on floor with a 9.800, while Brown finished in a tie for third with Air Force senior Kara Witgen with her 9.775 on floor.
The Aggies opened the meet by tying their season high of 48.825 on vault, then scored their No. 8 all-time bars score of 48.975 in the second rotation. The beam squad then hit a 49.175, matching the total first collected by the 2014 squad at Seattle Pacific on February 21, 2014. UC Davis threatened to crack the 196-point barrier for just the fourth time in school history, finishing the meet with a 48.800 on floor exercise.
Friday's meet also served as a farewell to seven seniors making their last Pavilion appearance: Michovska, Kreager, Katy Nogaki, Jordan Helgesen, Emma Hicks, Whitney Estrada and Shayla Barnett. Nogaki enjoyed a strong home finale, scoring 9.700 on vault and 9.775 on beam. Hicks hit career highs in exhibition performances on vault (9.725) and floor (9.750), while Estrada posted a 9.675 in her exhibition on floor. Helgesen appeared in exhibition on both bars and beam, delivering a 9.575 in the latter.
The overall 195.775 surpassed the team's previous 2017 high of 195.100, set in the February 19 home meet with Alaska Anchorage. The Aggies finish their regular season at the MPSF Championships, hosted by San Jose State on Saturday, March 18. UC Davis will hold the top seed and compete in Olympic (home) event order.
TEAM SCORES - 1. UC Davis, 195.775; 2. Air Force, 193.350.
VAULT - 1. Alexis Brown, UC Davis, 9.825; 2. Yonni Michovska, UC Davis, 9.800; 3(tie). Miranda Holder, UC Davis; Kara Jones, UC Davis; Riley Hill, AFA, 9.750.
UNEVEN BARS - 1. Rachel Kreager, UC Davis, 9.875; 2. Yonni Michovska, UC Davis, 9.850; 3 (tie). Miranda Holder, UC Davis; Sarah Liddle, UC Davis; Anna Salamone, AFA, 9.800.
BALANCE BEAM - 1. Alexis Brown, UC Davis; 9.900; 2. Yasmine Yektaparast, UC Davis, 9.850; 3 (tie). Aya Suzuki, UC Davis; Rachel Kreager, UC Davis, 9.825.
FLOOR EXERCISE - 1. Yasmine Yektaparast, UC Davis, 9.875; 2. Amanda Presswood, UC Davis, 9.800; 3 (tie). Alexis Brown, UC Davis; Kara Witgen, AFA, 9.775.
ALL-AROUND - 1. Alexis Brown, UC Davis, 39.050; 2. Kara Witgen, AFA, 38.475.