LSU gymnastics: NQS scores now in place, but Tigers remain No. 2 in national rankings

LSU gymnastics: NQS scores now in place, but Tigers remain No. 2 in national rankings
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First Mardi Gras, then Lent, then NQS season.

Collegiate gymnastics scoring made its shift toward postseason mode this week with NQS (National Qualifying Scores) now counting. The NCAA selection committee uses NQS as one of the prime metrics for determining teams and seeding for the NCAA championships.

How is it determined? A team’s top six scores are taken, three of which most be from away meets. The top score is eliminated and the other five scores are averaged.

As it happens, the advent of NQS did little to change the national rankings as compiled by the website RoadtoNationals.com. LSU is still No. 2 in the country with an NQS of 197.845, just as it would be based on its season-long average of 197.728.

Oklahoma (NQS 198.270) remains No. 1, while California (197.810) is No. 3. The only difference in the top six is that Utah is No. 4 at 197.645 while Florida – which beat LSU 198.150-197.950 this past Friday – is fifth (197.600). Kentucky is No. 6 (197.560).

LSU coach Jay Clark prefers that all scores count and that scoring be as easy for fans to digest as possible. But it’s a fight Clark has shelved for now.

“I understand all the concerns,” he said. “But I’m not a proponent of a sport counting 50% of what it does. It flies in the face of competition to me. To me, the larger the sample size the more accurate you get.

“But I’m not getting on a soapbox about it anymore. I think our fans who follow our sport ardently kind of get NQS now.”

LSU senior Haleigh Bryant is also still the nation’s No. 1-ranked all-arounder with an NQS of 39.730.

The SEC race

The Southeastern Conference regular-season title is in play going into the final conference meet weekend.

Florida is 5-1, with LSU and Kentucky at 4-2. If the Gators win or tie at Kentucky on Sunday, Florida wins a sixth straight regular-season crown outright. However, if LSU beats No. 9 Alabama on Friday (5 p.m., ESPN2) and Kentucky beats Florida, all three teams tie for first place.

LSU is seeking to win its first SEC regular-season title since winning the first two back-to-back in 2017-18. But the trophy isn’t the ultimate prize in the Tigers’ minds, according to senior Savannah Schoenherr.

“It’s in the back of our minds,” said Schoenherr, who won the title all five years she was at Florida before transferring to LSU for this season. “It’s very cool to show a sense of consistency over the whole regular season.

“But it’s not going to change our approach to the meet Friday.”

Emotional night

Schoenherr said she experienced a lot of emotions returning to Florida’s O’Connell Center as a Tiger instead of a Gator.

“It was very strange to go into the visitor’s locker room and start (the meet) on bars,” she said. “It was bittersweet and cool to compete there one last time.”

Schoenherr broke her foot in January 2023, forcing her to miss all of her senior season at Florida.

“I didn’t get to do senior night in the ‘O Dome,’” she said. “It was cool to compete in that environment as a Tiger with my girls by my side. They supported me all week.”

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About Mary Weyand 14813 Articles
Mary founded Scoop Tour with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research. With ample knowledge about the Automobile industry, she also contributes her knowledge for the Automobile section of the website.

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