SALT LAKE CITY — When the final results were announced Sunday afternoon at Haas Pavilion it came as a shock to many — the No. 4 Red Rocks had lost to the now No. 18 California Bears 197.500-197.450. It was only the second-ever defeat for Utah at the hands of California, the first coming two years prior, in 2016, at nationals.
The loss, as unexpected as it was, wasn’t the only surprise to come out of Berkeley, however.
Equally as shocking, and for the first time her in collegiate career, MyKayla Skinner did not compete in the all-around.
The reason? A bum ankle.
A week before against rival UCLA, Skinner tweaked her ankle. It happened so fast and was so innocuous that nary a fan, pundit or even teammate noticed. After nailing her vault routine, for which she was awarded a 9.950, Skinner celebrated, as she wont to do.
That fiery celebration included an enthusiastic exchange of high-fives between her and coach Robert Ladanyi that went ever so slightly awry.
“It was after my vault,” Skinner said, chuckling. “I just went to jump up in the air to give Robert a high-five and when I came down I was kind of on the basketball court. My foot just slid under me and my ankle twisted a little bit. It wasn’t bad, it was just a little sore.”
Rather than risk serious injury, coaches Megan Marsden and Tom Farden elected to rest Skinner on vault and floor against the Bears.
The experience was a different one for the All-American.
“It was really weird. I have never had the moment where I got to sit out on the floor and just watch,” said Skinner. “It was kind of cool to have that perspective and see some other teammates go in and have the opportunity to compete. It was good to see them be able to, to know if someone can’t go in because they get hurt we have (gymnasts) that can go in and compete for us.”
RED SCARE: Skinner hasn’t been the only Red Rock to have an injury scare of late. Towards the end of her floor routine against Cal, Kari Lee rolled her ankle, the same ankle in which she tore her Achilles tendon three years ago.
Fortunately for Lee and Utah gymnastics, it wasn’t too serious, as the redshirt junior finished the meet with a 9.900 on beam.
“It was the ankle that I tore my Achilles on, but it’s fine,” said Lee. “Initially it hurt, but then adrenaline kind of kicked in and I knew I had to do beam so I just pushed (the pain) away. It honestly feels fine right now. I’m good.”
MISSY MANIA: On March 9, at the Pac-12 Men’s Basketball tournament, held in Las Vegas, Nevada, five-time NCAA individual champion and Red Rock legend Missy Marlowe will be inducted into the Pac-12 Hall of Honor.
One of 12 inductees, Marlowe was a standout by every definition of the word at Utah. A 12-time All-American who recorded 98 career victories from 1989-1992 (she currently holds third-place in school history), Marlowe was a vital part of two national championship teams.
She was the first collegiate gymnast to score a perfect 10.0 in all four events and scored seven 10.0s in her career.
Marlowe is a member of Utah’s Crimson Club Hall of Fame, as well as the Utah Sports Hall of Fame.