Utah freshman Kailah Delaney is only competing on the vault due to a bout of mononucleosis that hampered her training for several weeks, but she certainly is making the best of the one event in which she competes.
Delaney earned a 9.95 on the event in Friday's win over BYU.
"I've been working a lot on landings on the vault and doing all I can do," she said. "It showed up tonight."
Delaney, who ranks sixth in the country on the event, has turned out to be the Utes' most reliable performer on the event, scoring a 9.9 in the season opener at UCLA and a 9.925 against Utah State.
Delaney was a strong vaulter before college, winning the vault at the 2009 Junior Olympic Championships. However, the way she has been able to be so consistent for the Utes has been a pleasant surprise.
"She is one that sticks everything in practice," Utah coach Greg Marsden said. "They've all been close, but tonight was the first one where she drilled it in competition like she did in practice day in and day out. She is going to stick a lot of vaults in her career with us."
On a mission
Marsden predicted a big year for sophomore Corrie Lothrop, and so far she is proving him right, winning Friday's all-around with a 39.325.
"She has rediscovered her passion for the sport and has been working really hard in every aspect," Marsden said. "From conditioning to nutrition to technique, she has been working hard to get better."
Cortni Beers had her best night as a Ute, scoring 9.9 on the uneven bars and balance beam. The uneven bars score tied her career best and the mark on the balance beam was a new career high.
"I was just trying to go out there and improve," she said. "I was more nervous at the Utah State meet. Once I got into action, my body knew what to do tonight."
Get them now
Utah's announced attendance of 15,310 for Friday's meet has the Utes anticipating an even bigger crowd for Friday's meet against rival Georgia.
Marsden said he is worried the Utes could turn fans away and is urging fans to buy tickets early so they won't be disappointed the day of the meet.
Last season, the Utes had to turn people away for the final home meets of the year.
"I know there were people standing outside watching the Jumbotron," he said. "It's a good problem to have, but we don't want to disappoint anyone."