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The Nebraska women's gymnastics team knew it didn't have a large margin for error if the Huskers were going to make a fifth straight trip to nationals.

So the No. 11 Huskers went out on Saturday at the Raleigh, North Carolina, Regional and did exactly what head coach Dan Kendig said they needed to do earlier this week.

They hit routines.

Nebraska posted a season-high 197.525 at a sold-out Reynolds Coliseum on the North Carolina State campus to finish just behind No. 2 LSU's 197.675 and book a trip to the NCAA Championships.

"They came in with some intensity today and they blew it away," Kendig said. "We gave LSU all they could handle."

Nebraska's Taylor Houchin won the uneven bars title and tied for the vault title, Sienna Crouse was second on the floor exercise and Danielle Breen and Grace Williams tied for second on the balance beam. Megan Schweihofer was fourth in the all-around and Kynsee Roby continued her strong freshman campaign with a career-high all-around score.

Houchin's 9.975 on the bars set a career high and her 9.950 vault tied her for that event title. All told, Kendig said it was a case of nearly every gymnast on every event hitting a great routine.

"We just kept hitting routines," Kendig said.

Nebraska didn't count an event total lower than 49.375 on Saturday after it started with a season-high 49.375 on beam to give the Huskers the early lead after one rotation. The bars total of 49.375 also tied a season high.

Kendig said the team didn't have a great practice day on Friday, but it also wasn't a bad practice day and the team accomplished what it needed to accomplish. Then on Friday night, the message was to focus on what they can control on Saturday, go out and hit routines and enjoy the process.

"We never wavered at all at any point in time," Kendig said.

The top two teams at each of the six regionals advance to the NCAA Championships, which are April 20-21 in St. Louis. The field is rounded out by No. 1 Oklahoma, No. 3 UCLA, No. 4 Utah, No. 5 Florida, No. 6 Alabama, No. 8 Washington, No. 9 California, No. 10 Arkansas, No. 12 Kentucky and No. 18 Georgia.

The Huskers have seen Oklahoma, Georgia, UCLA and Florida in competition this season.


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