April 16, 2024

Razorbacks Gymnastics Set for Season Opener Against Georgia Bulldogs at Barnhill Arena

Photo Credits - Wes Pruett/ 4 Star Sports Media, LLC

Razorbacks Gymnastics Set for Season Opener Against Georgia Bulldogs at Barnhill Arena

The Arkansas Razorbacks Gymnastics team, affectionately known as the Gymbacks, are gearing up for an electrifying start to their 2024 campaign at Barnhill Arena this Friday. With home gym advantage, the Razorbacks look to extend their impressive streaks and begin the season on a high note as they face the formidable Georgia Bulldogs.

Photo Credits – Wes Pruett/ 4 Star Sports Media, LLC

The Gymbacks are entering the fray with a commendable track record, having made their 19th consecutive regional appearance last year and finishing the 2023 season ranked 17th nationwide. This sustained excellence has kept Arkansas within the top 20 for an impressive 18 seasons.

Gymbacks head coach, Jordyn Wieber, who is in her 5th season at the helm, had this to say when asked about the opportunity to be the coach at Arkansas following her contract extension through the 2028 season. “I am so grateful to Hunter Yurachek and the University of Arkansas for the opportunity to continue to lead this program,” Wieber said. “I have so much pride in being a Razorback and working with my staff to have accomplished so far, but I am equally excited for the future. We are focused and eager to continue building this program and achieving excellence for many years to come.

Last year’s performances were nothing short of spectacular, with the team recording five scores north of 197, mirroring a feat achieved only once before in their history. The Razorbacks also smashed their previous bests, setting new program records in team score (197.475), vault (49.525), and beam (49.525), alongside achieving their highest postseason scores at the SEC Championships (196.825) and regionals (197.275).

With the return of All-SEC honorees such as Reese Drotar, Frankie Price, Cami Weaver, and the experienced talents of Jensen Scalzo, Leah Smith, and Maddie Jones, the Hogs have a robust lineup. The roster is further strengthened by four promising freshmen—Chandler Buntin, Dakota Essenpries, Hailey Klein, and Priscilla Park—ready to showcase their skills across all four events. Additionally, the offseason acquisition of balance beam All-American Sirena Linton, a transfer from Arizona, bolsters the team’s prospects for the new season.

The Georgia Bulldogs, meanwhile, have already tasted competition this year, having hosted and defeated NC State with a notable score of 196.200. As they prepare to engage in their first SEC action of the season, the Bulldogs will certainly aim to build on this success.

As for the historical contest, Arkansas and Georgia will be meeting for the 49th time, with the Razorbacks looking to improve upon their 10-37-1 record against the Bulldogs. Recent history favors Arkansas, with victories in their last four encounters, though they have not defeated Georgia at home since the 2020 season. As the Razorbacks and Bulldogs prepare for the showdown, here are some key numbers from their recent performances to keep an eye on: Georgia’s average scores and rankings indicate competitive edges, particularly on bars and beam, with Lily Smith and Anya Turner posting top individual scores.

Arkansas boasts strong numbers from the 2023 season, with top scores from Makie Sedlacek, Leah Smith, Reese Drotar, Maddie Jones, Cami Weaver, and Frankie Price.

With anticipation building, Friday’s event promises to be a thrilling start to the SEC gymnastics at its highest level. Fans can expect an energetic atmosphere, with team introductions at 6:45 p.m. followed by the first vault at 7 p.m. The event also doubles as a celebration for Alumni Night and Big Red’s 50th birthday, featuring cupcakes, a birthday sing-along, and fan giveaways. Tickets are available for purchase through various channels, including online and the Razorback Ticket Center.

For supporters who cannot attend, the meet will be broadcast live on SEC Network+, ensuring no one misses out on the excitement.

Arkansas Gymnastics is HERE!

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