April 21, 2013
LOS ANGELES -
A year after taking second place, Alabama gymnast Diandra Milliner won the NCAA Vault Championship Sunday afternoon in Pauley Pavilion on the UCLA campus.
Milliner shared the title with LSU's Rheagan Courville after both women scored 9.925s in front of a six-judge panel. It was Alabama's 24th individual NCAA title and 10th over the past decade. Milliner is the second UA gymnast to win an NCAA vault title, joining Ashley Miles who won vault in 2003, 2004 and 2006.
Milliner was also second on the floor exercise with a 9.925, just .0125 out of first. Her floor finish marked the third year in a row that an Alabama gymnast has finished first or second on the floor.
In individual finals there are six judges on each event. On the uneven bars, balance beam and floor exercise the score is determined by taking out the high and low scores and averaging the remaining four. On the vault all six scores are averaged.
Sophomore Kayla Williams was fifth on the balance beam with a 9.85 while junior Kim Jacob was 10th on the floor exercise with a 9.8. Sophomore Kaitlyn Clark and freshman Lauren Beers both scored 9.875s on the vault to take 11th place out of 24 vaulters.
All the individual event finalists earned first team All-American honors in the events they competed on. Overall, seven UA gymnasts earned 12 All-American honors in 2013, giving the Tide 64 athletes with 289 honors all-time.
Jacob and Milliner led the way with three All-American honors apiece. It bumped Jacob's career total to seven and Milliner's to six. Jacob was first-team on the floor exercise and second team in the all-around and on balance beam while Milliner was first team on the vault and floor and second team on the balance beam.
Williams earned first team honors on the balance beam and is now a two-time All-American for her career. Clark and Beers both earned first-team honors on the vault for the first honors of their careers.
Fifth-year senior Ashley Priess earned second team honors in the all-around and on the uneven bars, giving her 10 All-American accolades for her career. Junior Sarah DeMeo earned second team honors on the beam to make her a three-time All-American.