All three of Alabama’s senior gymnasts hit career highs Friday night in Coleman Coliseum.

The sentimental part: It was their Senior Night.

The competitive part: No. 8 Alabama defeated No. 12 Auburn 196.7 to 196.4 in front of a season-high 13,861 fans.

“I’m just proud of this class,” UA senior Ariana Guerra said. “I really am. Just going out there and giving it everything we have this last moment in Coleman Coliseum.”

Guerra actually knocked out not one, not two but three career highs, all 9.95s. She hit that mark first on vault and even received a 10 from one of the two event judges. She threw a Yurchenko 1.5, a 10.0 skill she only recently switched to.

That score paced the Crimson Tide’s season-best 49.35.

Then, on the uneven bars, Guerra pulled off the same thing and was the peak of Alabama’s 49.325, another season high.

“I set a goal this year that I want to have my best performance on bars, and that was before the season even started,” Guerra said. “When I saw the 9.95, I literally started tearing up because I’ve always kind of discredited myself to be able to accomplish the handstands needed to get that score. Finally seeing that, it was a really big reward for me. I just wanted to keep pushing and keep fighting.”

Guerra did not compete on balance beam, but that’s normal. Instead, seniors Abby Armbrecht and Angelina Giancroce had their standout moments.

Armbrecht first matched her career best — a 9.9 — and did so after a fall from junior Wynter Childers (9.275). Giancroce then set a career high — a 9.85 — in the anchor spot after freshman Emily Gaskins fell (9.2).

One of the falls had to count toward the Crimson Tide’s beam score, which ended up being a 48.525, its second-lowest this season.

“I just know that when something happens that we really weren’t planning for, the best thing for us to do is pull each other together and rally,” Giancroce said. “I just talked to the team about how, you know, that’s in the past and what’s in our future is our floor rotation.”

Alabama entered its final event down by 0.2, Auburn’s first lead.

“In practice, we actually put ourselves in scenarios — OK, we’re going into the last event and we’re 0.3 behind or 0.2 behind — whatever the scenario is that day,” Armbrecht said. “But we practice the mindset knowing we’re in a hole and having to come out.”

Which the Crimson Tide did.

Junior Maddie Desch led off with a 9.9. Armbrecht later tied her season high with a 9.925. Then, as the meet’s final competitor, Guerra closed things out with her last 9.95.

Confetti fell. The Senior Night video played on the big screen. That signified the end of Coleman Coliseum for those three seniors, but not the end of their season.

Alabama heads to Birmingham next week to face — yet again — Auburn for the in-state rivals’ annual Elevate the Stage meet.

“I will say, this team does not crumble easily,” Giancroce said. “We won’t break easily.”

Reach Terrin Waack at twaack@tuscaloosanews.com or at 205-722-0229.

—————
VAULT

Shea Mahoney, 9.775
Abby Armbrecht, 9.825
Emily Gaskins, 9.85
Shallon Olsen, 9.875
Lexi Graber, 9.85
Ari Guerra, 9.95

UNEVEN BARS
Kylie Dickson, 9.875
Angelina Giancroce, 9.8
Wynter Childers, 9.875
Ariana Guerra, 9.95
Shea Mahoney, 9.825
Emily Gaskins, 9.8

BALANCE BEAM
Alonza Klopfer, 9.7
Shallon Olsen, 9.8
Wynter Childers, 9.275
Abby Armbrecht, 9.9
Emily Gaskins, 9.15
Angelina Giancroce, 9.85

FLOOR EXERCISE
Maddie Desch, 9.9
Shallon Olsen, 9.875
Shea Mahoney, 9.85
Emily Gaskins, 9.8
Abby Armbrecht, 9.95

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