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Friday March 24th

UNC gymnastics loses 197.525 to 194.975 to Alabama

Morgan Lane, now a senior, competes in the 2017 EAGL Championships in Raleigh.
Buy Photos Morgan Lane, now a senior, competes in the 2017 EAGL Championships in Raleigh.

The North Carolina gymnastics fell to No. 6 Alabama, 197.525 to 194.975 in one of its final meets of the season on Friday.

What happened?

The Tar Heels started out strong on the uneven bars, while Alabama maintained a close early lead over the Tar Heels on vault during the first rotation. 

North Carolina senior Madison Nettles started the meet with a teaam low 9.200 on the uneven bars, but her teammate, and fellow senior Morgan Lane had the highest score for her team on the uneven bars with 9.825 — for a strong team showing, but still behind Alabama. 

Following the first rotation, UNC trailed Alabama 49.275 to 47.875. 

Next, the Tar Heels took on the vault while Alabama moved to the uneven bars. Nettles and sophomore Khazia Hislop were the two highest scorers on the vault for their team with scores of 9.850 and 9.875, respectively. Hislop’s score tied with the Crimson Tide's Shea Mahoney and Ariana Guerra for first place in the event.

After the second rotation, Alabama lead 98.750 to 97.025. The Tar Heels would need to perform exceptionally on beam and floor routines to come back in the meet.

For the third rotation, North Carolina moved to the floor while Alabama took on the beam. 

Despite their well-executed performances on the floor, the Tar Heels were unable to shrink the lead Alabama held over them after their rotation on the beam. After the third rotation, UNC was still behind 148.125 to 146.425.

After a few falls on the beam by the Tar Heels and high scoring performances on the floor by Alabama, UNC lost 197.525 to 194.975.

Who stood out?

Although the Tar Heels collectively did not perform well enough to defeat Alabama, senior Morgan Lane, who participated in all four events, was able to make a big impact on the score of her team due to her exceptional performances on uneven bars, beam, and floor.

Lane’s high scoring performances during the competition allowed her to match her personal best in the all-around competition, with a score of 39.400. Lane had the highest score for the Tar Heels on the uneven bars and tied for the best on the floor and the balance beam.

Khazia Hislop also performed well, with the highest score for the Tar Heels on the vault and tie for best on the balance beam.

When was it decided?

After two North Carolina gymnasts fell on the balance beam, it became clear that Alabama was going to win the meet. Although the Tar Heels performed well on the floor, they were unable to close the gap Alabama made in the score following the first two rotations. 

Why does it matter?

After losing to Alabama, the Tar Heels overall record fell to 6-6. With two regular season meets left in the season, the Tar Heels would benefit from wins going into the EAGL Championships towards the end of March.

When do they play next?

The Tar Heels will compete against Arizona, San Jose State and Air Force in Tucson, Arizona on Friday, March 9 at 8:30 p.m.


@DTHSports |

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