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UCLA's Olivia Courtney third in vault at NCAA gymnastics finals

April 21, 2013|By Diane Pucin
  • Louisiana State's Rheagan Courville competes in the unevenl bars in the NCAA women's gymnastics championships at Pauley Pavilion.
Louisiana State's Rheagan Courville competes in the unevenl bars… (Reed Saxon / Associated…)

UCLA had three of the top six competitors in the vault competition Sunday at the NCAA women's gymnastics event finals at Pauley Pavilion.

Junior Olivia Courtney, who was the very first of 23 competitors on the vault, scored 9.9167 points, good for third place, while senior teammate Kaelie Baer was fourth and senior Vanessa Zamarripa finished tied for fifth.

Diandra Milliner of Alabama and Rheagan Courville of Louisiana State were tied for first with scores of 9.9250.

Florida's Alaina Johnson, who was sidelined by a stress fracture in her back as recently as last month, won the uneven bars title with a score of 9.9125, edging  her Gators teammate and former Olympian Bridget Sloan and Utah's Georgia Dabritz, who tied for second with 9.9000. UCLA didn't have a representative in the uneven bars final.

On balance beam, UCLA freshman Danusia Francis debuted a new move that she had invented and did it perfectly but then fell on a relatively routine tumbling pass and finished eighth. Sloan won the event with a score of 9.900.

Courtney was the absolute final performer of the meet, finishing on floor exercise. The pro-UCLA crowd did the eight-clap while waiting for the score for Courtney. But she had some mistakes and finished 11th.

Joanna Sampson of Michigan won the floor exercise title with a near-perfect 9.9375.

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