Sophia Hyderally made an impressive debut in floor exercise to lead the Seawolves in their season-opening gymnastics meet Friday at the Alaska Airlines Center.
Hyderally, a junior, racked up two top-three finishes in the meet against Illinois State, including a third-place finish in floor -- an event she had never before competed in at the college level.
Illinois State won the meet 192.975-to 188.925 behind all-around winner Gabrielle Cooke. Cooke tallied 39.025 points to edge UAA’s Isabelle Fox (38.1) for the title.
Cooke won the floor (9.825) and vault (9.775). UAA grabbed second and third place in floor behind Fox (9.8) and Hyderally (9.75), but struggled in vault, where the Redbirds produced the top four scores.
“We got off to a very tough start on vault and bars, so I was pleased to see us recover and show more poise in the final two rotations,” UAA coach Tanya Ho said in a press release from the school. “We’ll see what we need to tweak and hopefully come back with a better showing on Sunday.”
Fox, Hyderally and sophomore Hope Nelson all supplied top-three finishes for the Seawolves. Hyderally was second in uneven parallel bars (9.7) and Nelson was third in balance beam (9.75). Fox, the reigning Mountain Pacific Sports Federation freshman of the year, added a fifth-place finish in vault (9.625) to her runnerup finishes in floor and all-around.
The teams will meet again Sunday at the Alaska Airlines Center at 2 p.m.