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Samantha Peszek (photo by Blaine Ohigashi)
Peszek Perfect in Two-Point Win Over ASU
By: UCLA Athletics
Los Angeles, Calif. - Samantha Peszek scored her first career perfect 10 on the uneven bars to lead UCLA to a 196.925-194.950 win over Arizona State on Saturday afternoon in front of a Pauley Pavilion crowd of 6,181.

The Bruins started the meet with a 49.225 on vault thanks to four scores of 9.825 or better. Hallie Mossett earned a career-best 9.825, followed by a 9.85 from Sydney Sawa. Sadiqua Bynum earned a 9.875, and Olivia Courtney closed the rotation with a stuck vault that scored 9.925. Arizona State kept it close with a 49.025 on bars, led by a 9.875 from Carissa Kraus.

Uneven bars got off to a shaky start when leadoff Ellette Craddock fell twice, but the Bruins were not deterred. Sawa stepped up to score 9.775, followed by a 9.85 from Mossett. The Bruins' final three competitors went big, hitting huge career-best routines. Courtney scored the streak with a 9.925. Sophina DeJesus nearly scored a perfect 10, earning a score of 9.975 to set Peszek up perfectly. Despite it being just her fifth routine on any event this season, Peszek nailed her routine, recording UCLA's first 10.0 on bars in four years.

"Sammy being able to do that on bars isn't just about her talent and her hard work," said UCLA head coach Valorie Kondos Field. "It's about her living the life of a champion 24-7. She ruthlessly attacks her weaknesses and has totally committed to working on those, and you can see it. It's not just in her gymnastics; it then permeates through her confidence. She has earned the right to be that confident."

After the Bruins' impressive season-high 49.525 on bars, the team took a 0.75 lead into the third rotation, balance beam. With Danusia Francis sitting out due to illness, the Bruins' beam lineup had a different look, but the team nevertheless earned another season-best with a 49.175. Craddock shook off her bars mistakes to tie her season high of 9.825, sticking her new dismount, an aerial to full-twist. DeJesus was solid as a rock, scoring a season-high 9.85. Freshman Mikaela Gerber showed some nerves in her first competitive routine of the year, falling on her mount, but Mossett helped pick her up by scoring 9.825. Sawa showed tremendous fight in staying on the beam and scored 9.725, and Peszek closed it out with another outstanding routine, tying her career-high with a 9.95. Arizona State made up some ground by scoring a season-best 49.3 on floor, led by a 9.925 from Natasha Sundby.

The Bruins were eyeing a season-high score heading into the final rotation, but it was a struggle to get there, as the team had a few uncharacteristic errors on floor exercise to score 49.0, just out of range of a 197 team score. Mossett led off with a 9.825, and DeJesus followed with a 9.675 due to an error on her leap series that lowered her start value. Bynum had a strong routine going, highlighted by a double layout, but stumbled forward on her final tumbling pass. Angi Cipra overrotated her new full-twisting double back opening tumbling pass and went out of bounds, dropping her score to 9.7. Courtney's wisdom teeth extraction from earlier in the week finally caught up to her during her floor routine, and she stumbled on her opening tumbling pass but fought hard to stay in bounds, scoring 9.775. Sawa finished strong, however, earning a 9.925 to secure the Bruins' season-high total of 196.925.

Mossett won the all-around for the second time in three meets, scoring a career-best 39.325. Sawa was just behind in second place with a career-high-tying 39.275.

Peszek's Perfect 10

UCLA Health Sponsor - Event Information
Saturday, Apr 02
vs. NCAA Regionals
Salt Lake City, UT
2nd, 196,375
Friday, Apr 15
vs. NCAA Team Semifinals
Fort Worth, TX
3rd, 196.700
Saturday, Apr 16
vs. NCAA Super Six
Fort Worth, TX
5th, 196.825