Oregon opened its 13th Acrobatics & Tumbling season with a road trip to surprisingly sunny South Dakota this weekend to take on the Augustana Vikings in Sioux Falls on Saturday. The Ducks turned in dominating performances across the board, winning the meet 268.685 to 251.655. The event was the first for Augustana’s new program and the first to ever take place in South Dakota.
Scoring-wise, acrobatics and tumbling are similar to gymnastics. Athletes competing as individuals or in groups begin each activity with a “perfect 10” score which is then reduced before their routine based on the elements the athletes do not include, giving that routine a “Start Value.” The athletes then have small increments deducted from the Start Value for any errors in their routines. There are 19 individual events. A perfect “Team Event” is worth up to 110 points, bringing the score for a perfect overall individual and team performance to 300 points, assuming all elements are included and are performed flawlessly. For Saturday’s event, Oregon’s Start Value for the entire competition was 295.110 and Augustana’s was 281.570 indicating that Oregon’s planned routines included more and more difficult - but not all possible - elements. The sport also includes some aspects of competitive cheerleading such as lifts, throws and pyramid-building. This video from 2021 will give readers a sense of the kinds of events in which athletes compete.
The Ducks won every event at Augustana, except the 5 Element Acrobatics and the 450 Salto Toss. In the “Compulsory” routines (where each team performs pre-scripted, identical elements), Oregon won all the events - Acro, Pyramid, Toss and Tumbling. The Ducks won the Acro break-out 25.60 to 23.05, Pyramid 29.50 to 27.00, Toss 28.00 to 26.05 and Tumbling 56.125 to 50.795. Oregon won the Team Event Total 91.26 to 89.01.
Oregon’s team sports 42 athletes, among the largest rosters in any Oregon sport. The team has a relatively abbreviated schedule in the growing sport, with 6 competitions spread out between now and early April. The highlight of the season is likely to be a visit from perennial power Baylor University which comes to Eugene on March 8. The Ducks will return the favor, traveling to Waco, Texas to face the Bears on April 1.
Oregon next travels to take on Asuza Pacific on Friday, February 17.