Ducks Dominate in Regular Season Finale

AZUSA, Calif. – Oregon acrobatics and tumbling was victorious in each of the six events of its regular season finale as the No. 4 Ducks cruised to a 270.420-266.370 win over No. 6 Azusa Pacific on Tuesday night.

Oregon (3-3) took control of the meet early with a 37.05-36.25 victory in the compulsory event and kept hold of its lead throughout the duration of the meet. The Ducks continued to impress in the pyramid event as scores of 9.90 in both the inversion and open heats powered them to a score of 29.55 and gave Oregon a 95.15-92.95 lead entering halftime.

Despite losing its first heat of the night in the third heat of the toss event, Oregon won the event 28.45-27.75 to further increase its lead. Solid scores on the back-half of the tumbling event helped Oregon add some insurance to its lead entering the team event, and after narrowly winning the final event of the night, 90.82-90.37, the Ducks secured their third victory of the season over a top-10 team.

How It Happened: Oregon opened the meet strong by sweeping each of the first three events, beginning with compulsory. Led by tops Emma Keogh and Makena Carrion, the compulsory toss event led the way with a score of 9.90 to help the Ducks build an early lead.

In the acro event Oregon found a stellar performance from its seven-element group as Bethany Glick, Emilie Henningsen, Italie Macchiavello, Bella Swarthout and Riley Watson teamed up to score a 9.85 to help UO win the acro event for the first time this season. The pyramid followed, and as has been the case all season the Ducks produced quality scores headlined by 9.90s in the first and third heats. Ava Gowdy, Alexis Giardina and Swarthout were involved in each of those heats and helped Oregon build a 95.15-92.95 lead at halftime.

After winning the first two heats of the toss event, UO was finally bested in the open heat. However, thanks to a 9.70 in the 450 salto toss from Shea Barnes, Rachel Furlong, Giardina, Niya Hewitt, Charlotte Lippa and Cami Wilson the Ducks were able to win the toss event for the fifth time in six meets this season.

Kaylie Barrera and Rickelle Henderson were stars once again in the tumbling event as Barrera scored 9.725 in the aerial heat before Henderson logged a 9.775 in the open heat to help Oregon win the event 56.00-55.30. Both teams executed their team events well, but in the end the Ducks took a narrow 90.82-90.37 win to earn their first sweep of the season and score above 270 overall for the fourth time this year.

What’s Next: The National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association will announce the 2024 championship field and at-large qualifiers for event finals on Monday, April 15.

– –