Sanya Glauber makes the most of meets as a bars-only competitor for Maryland gymnastics

Maryland gymnastics sophomore Sanya Glauber performs on bars during the Terrapin Invitational on March 1, 2020. (Julia Nikhinson/The Diamondback)

As sophomore Sanya Glauber hit the mat, coach Brett Nelligan rushed over to help her up. Glauber wasn’t injured, but the fall caused her to record Maryland gymnastics’ lowest individual bars score this season. 

That was Feb. 16 against Rutgers — the last time Glauber competed in more than one event during a meet. But instead of being dropped from the bars lineup, she stopped competing on vault.

And since focusing only on bars, Glauber has seen her scores rapidly increase, including a personal best 9.925 in Maryland’s most recent meet — a far cry from the 7.400 she posted after her fall. Though just one piece of the Terps’ bars lineup, the 4-foot-11 Glauber has proven she can have a tall impact on her team’s overall score. 

“Bars has kind of always been my specialty since I started getting recruited,” Glauber said. “It was really nice this weekend to be able to step up and be there for my team. … Bars has always been the one thing I can always count on and rely on for sure when competing.”

[Read more: “We were explosive”: A hot start fueled Maryland gymnastics’ season-best showing]

Glauber started the year competing solely on vault, averaging a 9.733 score in the event over the first three meets. And then, all-arounder Audrey Barber was declared academically ineligible, allowing Glauber to compete in her best event. 

After Glauber’s three meets in both the vault and bars lineups, Nelligan and the coaching staff removed her from the vault lineup ahead of the Big Five meet due to illness. Glauber was able to go on bars, however, and scored a 9.750. 

Now with two straight meets of bars-only competition, Glauber has competed in one event more than any other Terp. Because one moment can determine the quality of an entire performance for a one-event gymnast, pressure can mount.  

“You definitely feel the pressure because you’ve put in so much work, and then it all just kind of falls out on that minute-and-half,” Glauber said. “You really have to make that minute and a half count because every week, that’s what you train for.”

Glauber’s practice regimen doesn’t change when she has only one routine on the weekend. Although practices this time of year consist of mostly routine reps instead of stunt development, it’s still a challenge for Glauber to hone in on just bars. 

[Read more: Maryland gymnastics posts season-high 196.975 to sweep Terrapin Invitational on Senior Day]

With the second-best bars score for the Terps at the Terrapin Invitational, the California native accepted that challenge on Sunday. 

“For her, I think it’s her best event. That’s helpful,” Nelligan said. “They train all the events, so it’s hard sometimes to only be in one, actually.”

Nelligan expects to keep Glauber in the bars lineup going forward, and she remains an alternate on vault. 

But as long as Glauber competes only on bars, she knows she’ll have to zone in to replicate her 9.925 from Sunday. Glauber’s coaches and teammates will continue to have faith in her ability to score high when she gets her one shot per meet. 

“Only competing one event, you really have to stay focused the whole meet,” Nelligan said. “It’s difficult to be cold and have to jump up on the event after waiting around, but Sanya does a great job and we have total confidence in her.”

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