Members of Utah’s gymnastics team have been consistent in goal setting by saying they just want to do their best. But now there is no denying the Utes have a very clear goal as they prepare for the 2018 NCAA Gymnastics Championships April 20 and 21.

The Utes, who finished fifth last year, are clear in stating their mission is to reach the Super Six. The Utes have been among the top four teams all season, so anything less than a Super Six appearance would be heartbreaking.

“It’s always tough to be one of the top three teams to advance,” Utah coach Megan Marsden said. “But I think with our proven body of work this year that if we go in and perform at the level we are capable of, we should be able to get that done.”

The fifth-seeded Utes won their regional with a 197.475 and will compete against two-time defending champion and top seed Oklahoma, fourth-seeded Florida, eighth-seeded Kentucky, ninth-seeded California and 11th-seeded Washington.

Utah competes in the evening session, the less favorable time since it allows for less recovery time, but Utah did get a favorable rotation draw and will open on the vault and close on the floor in the last rotation.

Kentucky has a bye before bars, Florida opens on the bars, Oklahoma is stuck with the beam, Cal has a bye before floor and Washington opens on the floor.

“It’s the order we are used to, so that is good,” Marsden said. “We still have to practice how to handle the byes, but it’s a good rotation for us.”

The Utes plan to take it relatively easy this week and let most of the gymnasts rest, particularly the four who compete in the all-around.

Utah will hold a mock meet Friday and a few full practices next week before leaving for St. Louis.

While most of the lineups are set, Marsden said she is undecided what to do with the beam. The Utes used freshman Sydney Soloski in place of fellow freshman Alexia Burch on Saturday because Burch still was hampered by a knee injury. Soloski earned a 9.725.

“We are going to keep them both in mind, and it is more or less a gut feeling,” Marsden said. “We will assess the situation and try and make sure both are prepared to go in and take care of business.”


When • April 20 and 21

Where • St. Louis