The hope is that things will go drastically different and better for Alabama gymnastics Friday night at Auburn's Neville Arena than they did for either Tide basketball team this semester.

Wednesday night AU blew Bama out 99-81 in men's hoops. The Tiger ladies were able to beat the Tide 78-65.

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The No. 7 Alabama gymnastics team will travel to Auburn to take on the No. 14 Auburn Tigers (4-5, 0-3 SEC) in Neville Arena on Friday. The Crimson Tide’s sixth contest against a top-15 opponent will begin at 8 p.m. CT and will be aired live on SEC Network.

Friday night’s meet will be the sixth contest for Alabama (5-1-1, 2-1-1 SEC) this season as the Crimson Tide is coming off a hard-fought loss to the then-No. 3 Kentucky Wildcats. Despite the outcome, UA still podiumed in every event as seven gymnasts posted a total of eight individual, season-high scores.

Said Tide coach Ashley Johnston [a former Auburn assistant coach], “We’re looking forward to a big rivalry matchup this week. Our team has done a really good job transitioning week-to-week. We started off really strong in January then had a little hiccup last week, where now, we’re faced with a decision of what’s it going to take to close that gap from good to great.

"Auburn is a great team with a great crowd behind them and we’re excited to compete in that type of environment. We can’t wait to see our fans Friday night- we feel their impact, and we appreciate their support.”


  • Alabama is led by Coach Johnston, in her second season as UA’s head coach, while Jeff Graba is in his 14th year at the helm of Tigers.
  • The two teams have competed against each other 28 times since 2007 with Alabama leading the rivalry 25-3.


  • The loss to then-No. 3 Kentucky comes after facing a total of six top-10 nationally ranked opponents through the first five weeks of the season.
  • With the highest score on vault by a UA gymnast, Jamison Sears recorded the first podium finish of her Crimson Tide campaign after securing a career-high mark of 9.900.
  • Cameron Machado (9.900) and Luisa Blanco (9.925) captured podium finishes on the floor exercises behind season-high scores.
  • Alabama ranks fourth, nationally, on the uneven bars, with an average score of 49.460, while simultaneously posting top-seven rankings on all four events within the Southeastern Conference (No. 2 – UB; No. 5 – VT; No. 5 – BB; No. 7 – FX).
  • Individually, Luisa Blanco holds top-10 national rankings on uneven bars (5th - 9.925), vault (6th - 9.905) and the all-around (39.563).
  • Lilly Hudson ranks 15th, Blanco ranks 17th and Machado ranks No. 25 to put three Alabama gymnasts in the top-25 SEC floor exercise rankings.

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Gallery Credit: Mary K


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