March 23, 2014
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -
On the way to winning its eighth Southeastern Conference Championship in Birmingham, Ala. Saturday night, the Alabama gymnastics team also came away with a host of individual honors.
Senior Diandra Milliner won her second consecutive SEC floor exercise title with a score of 9.95 and followed that with the 2014 SEC Vault Championship after scoring a 9.975. Junior Kaitlyn Clark closed out Alabama's school-record uneven bars rotation and clinched the team title with a career-best 9.975, taking top honors on the event in the process.
With its trio of individual titles, Alabama has now won 60 SEC Championships since Julie Garrett won the Tide's first in 1982, including 43 since 2000.
Milliner and Clark along with senior Kim Jacob and freshman Aja Sims earned All-SEC honors. Sims also earned SEC All-Freshman honors along with Katie Bailey and Amanda Jetter. With three rookies earning All-Freshman, Alabama made up nearly half of the seven-member team. The Tide also earned three All-Freshman honors in 2011 when Milliner, Jacob and Sarah DeMeo took home the honors.
On Friday, it was announced that Jacob, by a vote of the league's coaches, earned SEC Gymnastics Scholar-Athlete of the Year recognition for a conference-record third year in a row. With Jacob's win, Alabama has taken home the league's top academic honor, which began in 2004, five times, including the last four years in a row. Michelle Reeser was the first UA gymnast to earn the honor in 2005, while Kayla Hoffman started the Tide's current streak in 2011. Earlier in the month Jacob was also honored as a member of the SEC Community Service Team.
The 2014 SEC Championships will air March 27 at 4:30 p.m. CT on ESPNU and March 29 at 10 a.m. CT on ESPN2.
Alabama will find out which of six regional sites it will be assigned to Monday at 2 p.m. CT during the NCAA Selection Show which will be broadcast on NCAA.com. As one of the nation's top six teams, the Crimson Tide will be the No. 1 seed at the regional.