LOGAN, Utah -
Utah State's gymnastics team will return to the friendly confines of the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum when the Aggies welcome in-state rival BYU to town on Friday, March 2, at 7 p.m.
The Mountain Rim Gymnastics Conference dual meet featuring the Aggies (6-6, 1-2 MRGC) and 24th-ranked Cougars (7-4, 3-1 MRGC) will be streamed live on the Mountain West Network as a USU Athletics Production. Additionally, live stats will be available online at utahstateaggies.com and meet updates will be provided through the team's various social media platforms.
Friday is Utah State's annual Breast Cancer Awareness Pink Meet. The first 100 fans in attendance will receive a free pink Utah State gymnastics T-shirt and fans who wear pink to the meet will receive $1 admission. The meet is also Youth Gymnastics Night and Junior Aggie Kids Club Night.
"This is a very special meet, being able to use an athletic event to bring about breast cancer awareness and potentially inspire someone to do a life-saving self-check, or to go get a mammogram, is incredible," said first-year USU head coach Amy Smith. "We are so honored to be able to support this cause and honor those who have been affected by cancer."
The Aggies are competing at home for the first time since Feb. 2 against then-No. 16 Boise State. Utah State just wrapped up a season-long four-meet road stretch that encompassed nearly 6,000 miles and four different states.
"We had a good four-meet road run and are so excited to be back in the Spectrum against such a big rival like BYU," Smith said. "The team is fired up and ready to go. We are very much looking forward to getting Jazmyn (Estrella) back on vault and bars, which should have a significant impact on our team score."
Utah State enters Friday's meet against BYU ranked 38th nationally and eighth in the North Central Region with a Regional Qualifying Score of 195.150. As a team, the Aggies are tied for 39th in the nation on vault (48.375), tied for 49th on bars (48.525), 27th on beam (48.870) and 25th on floor (49.085).
"We are excited to be back at home," junior Emily Briones said. "We have been on the road for a month now, and we are ready to be back at home."
Individually, freshman Autumn DeHarde is tied for 46th nationally on floor (9.865 RQS) and tied for 49th on beam (9.845). Briones is tied for 53rd on beam (9.840). On vault, freshman Mikaela Meyer and junior Madison Ward are tied for 69th and tied for 89th with a 9.820 and 9.805 RQS, respectively. Ward is also tied for 66th on floor (9.850). Also on floor, freshman Faith Leary is tied for 59th (9.855).
"I expect the entire team to hit," Briones said. "We have been training sticks and focusing on details to get tenths back. BYU is always so fun to compete against. The whole team has this fire whenever we go against BYU. It's just a bonus that we are back home and going against BYU on the same night."
BYU is ranked 24th in the nation and fourth in the North Central Region with a RQS score of 195.655. As a team, the Cougars are 28th in the nation on vault (48.940), tied for 27th on bars (48.885), tied for 35th on beam (48.695) and tied for 18th on floor (49.145).
Individually, Avery Bennett ranks tied for 56th on vault (9.830), Shannon Hortman-Evans is tied for 46th on bars (9.850) and tied for 53rd on floor (9.860), and Natasha Trejo is tied for 58th on beam (9.835).
Utah State is 48-73-1 all-time against BYU, including 25-22 at home, 10-31-1 on the road and 13-20 at a neutral site. The Aggies have won three consecutive meets against the Cougars in Provo and have won three of the last four matchups overall.
Utah State and BYU will square off in consecutive weeks as the Aggies head south on Friday, March 9, to compete in the Cougars' quad meet. Joining USU and BYU in Provo will be Penn State and Texas Woman's. The meet, which will take place at the Smith Fieldhouse, is at 7 p.m.
Fans can follow the Aggie gymnastics program at twitter.com/USUGymnastics, on Facebook at Utah State Gymnastics, and on Instagram at USUGymnastics. Fans can also follow the USU athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on Facebook at UtahStateAthletics.
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