On the heels of the best start in program history, No. 12 Auburn heads to Gainesville to take on No. 2 Florida in a battle between the SEC's last two undefeated teams.
"It's going to be a huge test for us this weekend going to Florida and dealing with that crazy environment," said Auburn head coach Jeff Graba. "We've been fighting for everything these last few meets, and now we've got to continue that as well as fine-tune our routines.
"It will take everything we've got to compete down there, but this team has already surpassed everyone's expectations and I think they will bring their best performance yet."
For its matchup against the Gators, Auburn will look to continue its dominating ways.
In the Tiger’s win last week over No. 17 Kentucky, the team posted 98.550 in both vault and bars, the second-highest score that Auburn has put up against the Wildcats in the last three seasons, while placing top 10 nationally.
Facing Florida is no easy task, however. Against top-ranked Oklahoma, the Gators posted a season-high 198.025 and only lost to the Sooners by .3 points.
"We go into this just trying to improve on ourselves,” Auburn's Meredith Sylvia said. “It's a big meet, so there's a lot of excitement around it, but they're all the same importance to us as we try to improve throughout the season.”
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The Gators squad boasts four All-American gymnasts and carries over 18 routines from a squad that placed third in the NCAA Super Six last year.
Trinity Thomas will be the biggest factor for Florida, with Thompson winning three SEC Freshman of the Week honors and while ranking first in the conference in bars, beam and floor and is second overall on all-around average.
If Auburn is to pull off the victory, it will be the program’s first against the Gators in 14 years.
The last victory for Auburn over the Gators at home was in 2004, with Auburn escaping 197.00 to 196.9. Florida also holds a dominating lead in the all-time series with a 70-10 record.
The match is set to take place a 6 p.m. CST on Friday, Feb. 8, and will be broadcast on the SEC Network.
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