By: McKalyn Crabtree
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The Alabama Crimson Tide is coming off their highest season score in the tri-meet against No. 17 Western Michigan and No. 25 North Carolina. The Tide also posted a season-high on the vault with a 49.500. Now, the team welcomes the Georgia Bulldogs to Coleman Coliseum. Can they keep up last week’s momentum?
Shallon Olsen, Luisa Blanco, Makarri Doggette, and Lexi Graber are just a few stars for the Tide this season. Blanco and Doggette closed out the uneven bars rotation with back-to-back 9.950s, so the pressure to repeat the performances will be high, but both gymnasts have proven they can handle the pressure. Graber continues to dominate the floor rotation, and with every performance, she seems to get better and better. Olsen has been flawless under pressure and will be a key in the anchor position.
Like Alabama, the Bulldogs started the season with substantial top-five matchups against No. 1 Michigan, No. 4 Florida, and No. 5 LSU. Last week, the Bulldogs finished second in a quadruple matchup with wins against Central Michigan and Illinois but fell to No. 10 Kentucky. The Georgia Bulldogs are 2-4 overall and 0-3 in conference meets.
Alabama ranks ahead of Georiga in all four rotations, especially in the balance beam as the Tide ranks at No. 7, while the Bulldogs rank at No. 56. It will be critical that the team takes advantage of Georgia’s balance beam weakness. Megan Roberts, Mikayla Magee and Haley De Jong will need to have a perfect night if they want to upset the No. 8 Crimson Tide.
It will be another exciting home meet for the fans as it is Power of Pink on Friday night. Fans are encouraged to wear pink for breast cancer awareness and will mark the initiative’s 18th year since it started in 2004. Coleman Coliseum will be rocking and filled with pink as the Georgia Bulldogs come to town.