WACO, Texas (Baylor Athletics) The No. 1 Baylor acrobatics and tumbling team defended its title Saturday evening, earning its fifth-consecutive National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling National Championship by defeating No. 2 Oregon 278.400 to 271.725.
Baylor (12-0) finished the regular season with a program-record 12 wins and ended the 2019 campaign on a 30-meet win streak.
The Bears took all six events and 15 of the 20 total heats, but were pushed the entire way by the Ducks (7-3) who gave Baylor all it could handle.
The Bears took a very narrow lead after compulsory, 37.675 to 37.600, and edged out the Ducks in acro, moving the total to 66.775 to 66.275 through two events.
In pyramid, Baylor squeaked by Oregon by just two-tenths of a point to take a 96.175 to 95.475 lead into halftime. The toss event was even closer, but the Bears were still able to claim the event, this time by just one-tenth of a point, extending their overall meet lead to 125.275 to 124.475.
Baylor catered to its strength in the tumbling event, recording a 57.275 event score and increasing its total lead to 182.550 to 179.175 entering the team routine. Kaylee Adams and Briana Harris put together an impressive 9.600-scoring duo pass, as well as the two highest scoring individual passes. Adams threw a 9.900 six-element pass and Harris, who hadn’t competed in the open pass during the NCATA tournament, scored a 9.825.
In the team event, the Bears performed a 95.850-point routine to clinch the victory.
Additionally, the Bears captured eight individual event national championships on Saturday, which tied a program record. To start, Adams, Lexie Amrhein, Hope Bravo and Alexis Fowlkes earned BU’s first-ever title in the six-element acro heat with a 9.675 score. The Bears also took the inversion pyramid heat with a 9.950 with a squad of eight athletes.
Baylor took two of the three toss trophies with wins in the 450 salto and synchronized heats before capturing four victories in tumbling. Adams and Harris took home the duo pass championship with a season-high score of 9.750, while the team of Amrhein, Echelberger, Madison Kruse and Mercy Seay claimed the quad pass with a 9.225.
Bravo earned Baylor’s fifth-consecutive aerial pass championship, scoring an impressive 9.900 in the pass, and Adams took home the six-element trophy with a score of 9.650 to highlight an exciting morning of accolades for the Bears.
Head coach Felecia Mulkey has now won all nine NCATA National Championships since the sport’s first national title in 2011 and is now 53-1 during her stint at Baylor.