Spartan Gymnastics Advance to Sunday’s NCAA Pittsburgh Regional Final

It’s their second straight regional final
Michigan State University Spartans logo. (MSU Image)
Michigan State University Spartans logo. (MSU Image)(WLUC)
Published: Mar. 31, 2023 at 10:34 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

PITTSBURGH (MSU Athletics) - No. 10 Michigan State (24-4) used a 196.825 team score to finish second in its session and advance to Sunday’s NCAA Pittsburgh Regional Final on Friday afternoon in the NCAA Regional Second Round in Pittsburgh.

No. 7 Cal earned the first qualifying spot with a 197.250. Western Michigan finished third (196.175) and West Virginia placed fourth (195.850) to round out the first session.

The Spartans advance to their second-straight regional final with Friday’s runner-up finish. The top two teams from the second session on Friday – featuring No. 2 Florida, No. 15 Arizona State, No. 24 Maryland and Penn State – will join MSU and Cal in Sunday’s final at 5 p.m. The top two teams from the regional final will advance to the NCAA Championships in Fort Worth, Texas on April 13 and 15.

FLOOR - The Spartans got off to a strong start in the first rotation on floor with a 49.475 and held an early lead over Cal at the end of the rotation. MSU posted three scores of 9.900 or higher, led by sophomore Skyla Schulte and junior Delanie Harkness, who scored matching 9.925s. Freshman Nikki Smith earned a 9.900. Junior Giana Kalefe scored a 9.875 and sophomore Gabrielle Stephen scored a 9.850.

VAULT - MSU scored a 49.000 on vault in the second rotation. Schulte posted the highest score for the Spartans with a 9.875 and Stephen and senior Nyah Smith both recorded 9.850s. Sophomore Lauren Hsu made her return to the vault lineup, scoring a 9.725, and junior Baleigh Garcia scored a 9.700. Cal took the lead after two rotations after putting up the best floor rotation of the meet with a 49.550.

BARS - The Spartans retook the lead in the third rotation with a stellar 49.325 bars rotation. Harkness scored her second 9.925 of the day in the anchor spot to lead MSU, earning a 10.000 from one of the four judges. Stephen earned a 9.875, while freshman Olivia Zsarmani, making her first appearance in the bars lineup since March 3, scored a 9.850 alongside freshman Nikki Smith. Senior Jori Jackard posted a 9.825.

BEAM - MSU held on for the second qualifying spot of the session with a 49.025 on floor in the final rotation. Stephen wrapped up her strong all-around day with the highest beam score of the session, scoring a 9.950. Schulte scored a 9.900 and Harkness scored a 9.850.

Stephen and Schulte earned the top two all-around scores of the first session, scoring a 39.525 and 39.475, respectively.

MSU returns to the Peterson Event Center on Sunday, April 2 to compete in the NCAA Regional Finals at 5 p.m. The meet will stream on ESPN+.

Subscribe to our News 10 newsletter and receive the latest local news and weather straight to your email every morning.