The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

PART 1: Friday Live Blog – January 15, 2021

Because it’s going to be a loooooong one, I’ll split up today’s live blog into two parts. This one will handle the start of the day, and then once the SEC meets begin at 7:00 ET/4:00 PT, I’ll switch over to part 2.

Friday, January 15
Scores Stream
3:00pm ET/12:00pm PT – Denver @ Iowa State LINK ESPN+
4:30pm ET/1:30pm PT – Iowa @ Minnesota LINK BTN
5:00pm ET/2:00pm PT – Illinois @ Nebraska LINK BTN+
6:00pm ET/3:00pm PT – Pittsburgh @ NC State LINK ACCN

I’ve been eyeing the Illinois/Nebraska meet this week, even more so because Nebraska’s press notes list a roster of just 13 gymnasts, absent Sarah Hargrove and Megan Verceles-Carr. So that’s going to be interesting.

Denver and Iowa State about to get started.

Rotation 1

Turner – VT – ISU – “about to hit leadoff.” No. We’re not doing that. big amplitude on her Yfull, some piking at the end, larger bounce back. 9.700

Ruiz – UB – Denver – blind full to tkatchev, hit – rushes hs a little, legs together on bail, some angle – DLO is clean, slide back, a couple tight handstands but solid.

Parker – VT – ISU – solid potential on her yfull, comes in just a bit deep on her landing, with another larger bounce back. 9.775

Casali – UB – Denver – saluting so many times. We’re still not ready. toe on to maloney, good legs together into bail, very crisp form – some elbows on final cast, DLO, has the height, slide back. That’ll sure work for this lineup. 9.800

Maxwell – VT – ISU – hits a Y1.5 in the third position, around well – just some deep knees at the end and a hop forward. 9.825

Bars scoring, let’s pick this up…

Hutchinson – UB – Denver – a bit short on first hs – maloney to pak, good legs on maloney, some break on pak – 1/2 turn on low – solid cast hs on high bar – high DLO, small hop. 9.850

Steinmeyer – VT – ISU – really strong 1.5 – very quick out of that salute lol – only a small hop to the side on landing and a bit of knees. Should pop up in scores from Maxwell. 9.850. Accurate score, would be 9.9+ at certain schools.

I’ll say it again, bars scoring, let’s not move at a glacial pace.

Mundell – UB – Denver – good first hs – high tkatchev, pretty toe point – toe on to bail, keeps her toes throughout, looks like best hs so far from this angle – DLO, small hop back. 9.875

Boychuk – VT – ISU – has some nice amplitude on her y1.5, finishes in time – hop forward, also a bit of knees, similar to Steinmeyer. 9.825.

Glynn – UB – Denver – clear hip to gienger, good legs together – bail is clean – small hip angle on a handstand or two but the last one is strong – FTDT with a step back and another small salute-step. 9.850

De Jesus – VT – ISU – settled at Iowa State after all – another strong Y1.5 – small shuffle to the side, a bit of knees on the block but most extended of the bunch in the air. 9.900

Brown – UB – Denver – maloney to pak, great amplitude on pak – van leeuwen, solid – a couple moments of hip angle in cast – strong DLO, small slide. Another good one. 9.925

Iowa State with a very strong vault performance featuring four Y1.5s that goes 49.175. They’ll take that score. There are arenas where it would have been 49.3+, but they’ll take that score.

Denver up to 49.300 on bars to take the lead after one. Lots of potential in this group this year with three freshmen making the lineup, all of whom should stay there if this performance is any indication. I don’t think we saw any sticks (?) and the score was 49.300.

“UCLA made an offer but couldn’t quite come up with the scholarship money that Iowa State was able to offer.” – commentator on Addy DeJesus

Rotation 2

Ruiz – VT – Denver – bounce back on her yfull, solid, not the most distance, some piking. 9.700

Langkamp – UB – ISU – hesitates in hop grip change but works through it into piked jaeger, some clear hip angle in a few of these handstand positions – struggles up to her final cast hs – good DLO, only a small absorption hop. 9.725

Hutchinson – VT – Denver – controls the landing on her full but quite a bit of legs on her block. 9.650

Maxwell – UB – ISU – hecht mount – blind change to jaeger, very late on blind change, solid jaeger, rushes cast handstand out of it – hits bail and final cast is stronger – DLO, hop back. 9.725

Sundstrom – VT – Denver – very strong landing on her full, basically stuck, small hop in place. Gets some height but not much distance at all on hers. 9.875 is a lot for me there.

Cooke – UB – ISU – good first hs, small hesitation, hits Shap to Pak with solid legs together – late 1/2 turn on low bar – strongest casts so far – giant full to double tuck, low chest on double tuck with a hop forward. 9.675

Glynn – VT – Denver – Tsuk full and struggles to control the landing today with a bounce back and a subsequent lunge to control. Leg separation on the block as well. 9.700

Bars judges sending scores to each other via carrier pigeon.

Vella-Wright – UB – ISU – good first hs position – shap to pak, excellent form – hits hs on low – van leeuwen, legs together throughout – FTDT, deep landing on that one with a bounce back. Only very little to take on the bars themselves. 9.875

Mundell – VT – Denver – pulls around her Y1.5 – lands somewhat deep and has to hop back to save the landing. 9.700

Horowitz – Ub – ISU – hecht mount – short first hs – blind to jaeger, nice height – better next cast hs – toe on to bail, small foot separation – hits final cast – DLO, a bit forward which causes a bound forward. 9.800

Brown – VT – Denver – Y1.5 – today her Y1.5 landing was short, lunge back. 9.800

De Jesus – UB – ISU – hits ray to overshoot, high ray – good cast hs on high – floaty DLO with a bounce back. Nice routine.

Just a 48.775 for Denver on vault, bringing the two-event total to 98.075. Did not have the landings yet. A couple short Y1.5s and most vaults had a large bounce. Sundstrom was the only one with a controlled landing.

Still waiting on the score for De Jesus to see what we’re all about with ISU’s bars.

9.850 for De Jesus gives ISU 48.975 on bars and a 98.150 total to move ahead of Denver. Not as strong of a rotation from either team, but ISU had the form in those final three bars routines to bring the total up.

Rotation 3

Steinmeyer – BB – ISU – if this dude says “leadoff hitter” one more time – kickover slightly deep, works through it into beat jump – bhs loso series, secure – switch to split 1/4, a hair short of split but fine – 1.5, bounce in place. Good. 9.800

Ruiz – FX – Denver – opens with pike full in, secure landing, just some chest down – no, the judges are not looking for them to “have fun” – switch side to popa to straddle – front tuck through to double tuck, minor stagger on landing. 9.825

Parker – BB – ISU – wolf single, hit – nice amplitude on her loso series, small lean – cat leap to switch 1/2, to beat, short of split position on switch 1/2 – switch to split – 1.5, can’t control the landing with a bound forward. 9.750

Casali – FX – Denver – nails the landing on her piked full in, stuck, just some chest down – 2.5 to front tuck, small hop – switch 1/2 to wolf jump full, a bit short on switch 1/2 – double pike, bounce back OOB, first major issue there. 9.675

Palacios – BB – ISU – side aerial bhs, secure, lean on arm wave working out of it – split jump to split jump 3/4, large break and has to touch the beam to stay on (.3), deductions for splits there as well – side aerial to full, hop in place. 9.475

Thompson – FX – Denver – double pike, controls her step back – switch side to popa, almost a bit out of control on landing – front lay to rudi, slide back – finishes 3/1, secure landing, pretty much all the way around, some leg crossing but not too bad, probably forgiven on 3/1. 9.850

De Jesus – BB – ISU – “Addy was a great athlete.” So good thing she’s not an athlete anymore? – bhs to high loso, small lean to hold it – straddle to sheep jump, tries to sell the combo – cat leap to side aerial, another small arm wave – 2/1, stuck landing, some leg crossing. 9.750

Glynn – FX – Denver – front through to double tuck, controlled step – really struggles on her leaps today – split and both straddle elements were well short – double pike, larger bounce back. 9.775. Thought it would be lower because of splits.

Semple – BB – ISU – high bhs loso series, very clean, good toe point – controls her full turn pretty well, avoids a check – switch 1/2 is short of split, connected to beat – switch to split, pretty foot positions – side aerial to a stuck full. Very well done. 9.825. Not enough separation from the other routines there.

Hutchinson – FX – Denver – front 2/1, small crossover – switch 1/2 to split jump full, pretty close to full position – back 1.5 to layout, stuck, some legs – rudi to a well controlled straddle jump, good. 9.850

Boychuk – BB – ISU – wolf single, hit – bhs bhs loso, hit, small arm wave, loose knees throughout – side somi and falls, chest too froward, no chance – so they’ll have to count a 9.475 now – switch 1/2, another large break, wobble both directions – hits gainer full. 9.150

Brown – FX – Denver – big DLO, keeps that front foot down – switch 1/2 to wolf jump full, strong amplitude on leaps – 1.5 to front layout, small pause before split, but it’s solid – double pike is short with a lunge forward, just a couple short landings today as she comes back. Not quite to Lynnzee Brown level, but getting there. Still goes 9.875. So at least one person was ready to 10 it before the final pass.

We need to talk to gymnastics about the pronunciation of Achilles. The i is a short i, not a long e. I have elected to die on this hill. Goodbye.

Denver’s 49.175 on floor takes the total to 147.250, moving ahead of Iowa State, which has to count that 9.475 on beam for a 48.600 and a total of 146.750. A beam mistake is really the only thing in this one right now, and Denver going to beam now.

Rotation 4

Brown – BB – Denver – kickover into bhs, a bit too slow for me in combo (obvi) – switch to split, some short back leg in switch, split was high – aerial to wolf, nice lift into wolf as well – gainer full, slides legs together – secure work. 9.850

Cooke – FX – ISU – front 2/1, around, somewhat short and has to slide back to correct – switch to split leap full, pulls them around – back 1.5 to front full, really well done, legs together – 9.650

Thompson – BB – Denver – side aerial to loso, secure landing, just some feet, nice and high – switch to switch, not bad in the back leg department – very minor hesitation on full turn – side aerial to full, holds the stick slightly deep. 9.875

Steinmeyer – FX – ISU – front 2/1, hits it, hop to the side on landing, keeps it in bounds – good lift on straddle elements – 1.5 to front lay, good 1.5, a bit low on front lay – double pike, stagger slide back. 9.675

Ruiz – BB – Denver – hitch to switch side, good position on that switch side, right parallel – bhs loso series and falls – side aerial to split jump is very secure – gainer pike, stuck. 9.225

Parker – FX – ISU – pike full in, chest down with bounce back, not a large bounce – front tuck through to double pike, slide back again, keeps it in bounds – 9.775

Mundell – BB – Denver – sideward roll mount – bhs loso series, great amplitude, arm wave correction – full turn, secure – switch to switch 1/2, nice actual position on the switch 1/2 – side aerial, controls it – 1.5, slides heels together, nicely done. 9.900

Diab – FX – ISU – another front 2/1, controls it pretty well with a crossover step – front lay to front full to stag, good. Rudi to a pretty loso. 9.825

Minnesota/Iowa about to start on B10 Network. Olivia Karas is doing commentary and they chose…not her best highlights? Like, we couldn’t have found a stick in the archive? She had a few.

Hutchinson – BB – Denver – kickover to bhs was pretty strong – switch to split, solid switch position – aerial with a lean correction, I’d say broken connection into split jump – gainer full. Hit. 9.800

De Jesus – FX – ISU – starts just double tuck, bounce backward – 1.5 to a front loso, nice – really struggles on double pike, didn’t have the height so started to tuck it, would give tuck credit, and then a deep ladning with a big lunge. 9.575

Vasquez – BB – Denver – bhs loso, no trouble – switch 1/2 to split jump, smallest hesitation between the two, great execution of course – smooth Y full – sissone, pretty – side aerial to a stuck full. Awesome work.

Maldonado – FX – ISU – front 2.5, excellent, gets it around – front 2/1 second pass to front tuck, a bounce out of it – great position on her popa – double pike, stuck landing. Excellent finish. 9.825. Psssh.

Iowa has opened with a Shap fall on bars. Peels off.

Waiting on final scores from ISU and Denver. Vasquez goes 9.925 to give Denver 49.350 on beam and a 196.600 total. It’s a 195.500 for Iowa State.

Oooooof. Mya Hooten, Second up for Minnesota on vault, pulls out of her vault run, does a knee slide over the table and front tuck onto the mat. That was…scary and awesome?

Henderson – UB – Iowa – toe on maloney to bail, small leg breaks – solid cast hs on high – FTDT, bounce back. Hit.

Ramler – VT – Minnesota – solid Y1.5 – a medium bounce forward, some knees, should be solid score. 9.850

Hartzler – UB – Iowa – blind full to piked jaeger – blind to straddle back, short of handstand – giant full with a loose back, double tuck, arm wave to hold the stick. Solid. 9.750

Commentator said Henderson got a 10 on bars, which there’s no way, so I’m assuming a little communication error there.

Loper – VT – Minnesota – gorgeous 1.5 – solid form throughout, small hop. Well done. 9.950. OK now.

It’s a 9.775 for Henderson on bars. That makes more sense.

Someone tell this dude Henderson went 9.775.

Kenlin – Ub – Iowa – a bit short on first hs – maloney to pak, nice high pak, some leg separations – toe full to double tuck, sticks the landing. A few handstand positions and small leg separations, but getting toward what we’ll expect from her. 9.875

Quarles – VT – Minnesota – a very long Y1.5, comes in short with a slide back. 9.925 is pretty high for a short landing.

Greenwald – UB – Iowa – small arch on first hs – Ray, good arm extension – pak, a bit of leg break – DLO, nearly sells the stick, too quick to salute. But nicely done.

Horak – VT – Minnesota – vaults just a Ylayout, probably didn’t want to have to use her but then Hooten got a zero, so that will undermine what otherwise would have been a big rotation score.

Kaji – Ub – Iowa – blind to jaeger, good toe point – some loose back in hs – pak, legs apart – high DLO with great position in the air. Pretty strong bars for Iowa after that first-position fall.

Stop saying Henderson got a 10. She did not get a 10. That was her start value.

Castle in exhibition for Iowa on bars. Another viable option, similar to several of the 9.750s in the lineup. Good DLO.

Kaji finishes with 9.850 to give Iowa 49.000 on bars.

Koch in the final spot for Minnesota goes 9.625 (which is reallllly high for a Ylayout), so Minnesota will be at 49.100 despite having to count a layout.

Well that was an……eventful first rotation.

Nebraska and Illinois about to get started. Ish. Looks like Nebraska putting up five on vault.

Rotation 2 for Iowa/Minnesota, Rotation 1 for Illinois/Nebraska

Greenwald – VT – Iowa – full, efficient vault, good direction, bounce back, some pike. 9.775

Montgomery – UB – Minn – good first hs – blind to jaeger, very close catch and that shows up in her overshoot, larger leg break – double front, small step. 9.550

Vance – VT – Iowa – bounce back on full, some leg position, solid distance, chest down on landing.

Curtis – VT – Nebraska – hits a full, larger bounce back, clear piking. 9.725

Hooten – UB – Minn – blind to piked jaeger to overshoot, very good form – a bit short on cast hs on hgih – double front, step back, solid. 9.750

LaPlante – VT – Iowa – solid amplitude on her full but comes in alittle low with a hop forward.

Davis – VT – Nebraska – smaller bounce back on her full, some legs on her block.

Willmarth – UB – Minn – Ray, some extended catch – bail, clean leg position, good vertical – small arch on cast on high, pulls it back, stuck double tuck. 9.875

Looks like a fall second up for Illinois on bars for Ewald, following a 9.825 from Borden.

Killian – VT – Iowa – best full of the bunch so far, good distance – small piking, medium bounce back. 9.850.

Loper – UB – Minn – good first hs – maloney to pak, gorgeous – very precise 1/2 turn on low bar – giant full to double tuck. Well that routine was sublime. 9.925.

Piringer – VT – Nebraska – best full so far, legs together, less piking, smaller bounce back

Kenlin – VT – Iowa – huge bounce back on her Yfull, good distance but won’t get the score because of that landing. 9.700.

Just a full for Dujakovich on vault for Nebraska, hop in place.

Sales – UB – Minn – good first hs – bail is pristine – good toes – khorkina, controlled – hitting hs hs well – DLO, near stick, small hop forward. 9.825

Henderson – VT – Iowa – big full, great amplitude and distance – medium bounce back is really the only thing.

Lorange finishes for Nebraska on vault with a full. Bounce back, some more piking and leg break than others in the lineup.

Ramler – UB – Minn – maloney to pak, legs right together, perfect, good hs – van leeuwen, excellent – toe on to FTDT, stuck landing. Well, picking up where she left off. Though a bad angle for us to judge handstands. 9.925

That’s 49.300 for Minnesota on bars led by the 9.925s from Loper and Ramler. 48.950 for Iowa on vault, which works for them. Two 9.850s there.

Nebraska will get through a vault lineup of five with a 48.800 – Takwkaea finishes for Illinois on bars with a lovely jaeger, just one short handstand in there, but struggles with her DLO, short landing with a bound forward.

Takekawa still gets out of that one with a 9.800. (It’ll be Borden in the leadoff spot with a 9.825 as the team’s highest score.)

After 1: Nebraska 48.800, Illinois 48.975

Actually looks like Ewald, who originally had two falls in the second position, was allowed to go again at the end because of an equipment issue and goes 9.900, which will bring Illinois up to 48.975 instead of 48.675. So that helps.

After 2: Minnesota 98.400, Iowa 97.950

Rotation 3 for Minnesota/Iowa and Rotation 2 for Nebraska/Illinois

Sonier – BB – Minnesota – bhs loso, smallest little lean correction – beat jump to split jump 3/4, secure but short of split position – beat to loso, check to the side – bhs one-arm-bhs 1.5 dismount, a bit short with a step back. 9.850. Quite high.

Killian – FX – Iowa – gets her opening 3/1 around, smaller bounce back – front 1/1 to front pike, a bit low on that pass – good height on switch side to popa – double tuck, a bit deep, slide back. 9.825

Montgomery – BB – Minn – bhs loso series, secure and powerful series, just a bit tight – beat to straddle 1/2 to tuck jump, punch front with a bounce forward but keeps it on the beam – 1.5, stuck landing, leg crossed but very secure. 9.825

Lorange hits in the first spot for Nebraska on bars. Takekawa VT for Illinois – nearly stuck landing, small step after a second on her full.

Greenwald – FX – Iowa – apparaently this routine is “nightmarish” which is my favorite kind – full in – solid, small slide – 2.5 to front tuck, pulls that front tuck around comfortably. 9.900. Big one.

It’s a fall for Thaler for Nebraska in the second spot on bars. Misses hands on a Maloney.

Loper – BB – Minn – bhs loso, nice extension – kickover with a check, breaking connection into beat jump – switch to straddle 1/4, nice position on switch – 1.5, nearly sells the stick but step-salutes. 9.800

Colombo with a beautiful higgins to piked haeger on bars for Nebraska, but she does catch kind of close on her pak – front giant 1/2 to double tuck with a bounce back.

Castle – FX – Iowa – round off double pike, short with a bounce – rudi with a bounce back – 1.5 to layout, has to whip over the layout a bit. 9.725

Roby is back on bars for Nebraska with a needed, solid bars routine, short landing on DLO with a stagger but not a lot.

Korlin-Downs – BB – Minn – candle mount – nice pose positions – bhs loso, very secure, a bit of knees at the end – switch with a check, good split position but broke the combo – does beat to split to double stag to make up for it, nice stick. 9.600

Good full from Simons on vault for Illinois, distance and a controlled landing

Davis – Ub – Nebraska – maloney to clear hip to hindorff, nice! – Gets a little loose in her bail – DLO whipped out a little with a shuffle. Really strong opening combination there.

Kaji – FX – Iowa – 1.5 through to double tuck, super secure, and very high on the 1.5 – lone front tuck – double pike, landing also secure – this is a very pretty routine – 9.925

Another 48.800 for Nebraska, this time on bars, dropping the miss from Thaler and everyone else going between 9.700 and 9.800. Illinois now leads by .075 with a 97.675.

Sales – BB – Minn – bhs bhs loso, very small arm wave correction but hides it – switch to switch 1/4, good split positions, a check working out of it – gainer pike, completely out of frame. 9.725

Guerin – FX – Iowa – full-in, nailed the landing, excellent – high switch 1/2 to popa to straddle, good amplitude – front tuck through to double tuck, also a controlled landing. Another very strong showing. 9.950

Ramler – BB – Minn – smooth full turn – bhs loso series, solid landing, extended – aerial right into wolf jump, well connected – beat to split ring jump, right on – side aerial to full, stuck. Another excellent routine. 9.975. I see.

Henderson – FX – Iowa – big full in, easily completed, bounce back – switch side to popa to straddle jump – front tuck through to double tuck, short landing with a lunge forward. 9.825

That Ramler score gives Minnesota 49.175 on beam. A huge Iowa floor score of 49.425 tightens things up and puts Iowa just two tenths back going to the final rotation.

Chloe Lorgane with a nice stick on a 1.5 beam dismount in the first spot for Nebraska in rotation 3. 9.800

Curtis – BB – Nebraska – wolf jump to immediate front tuck, keeps it on the beam but a large break to the side – bhs loso series and now it’s a fall.

Ewald – FX – Illinois – punch front 2/1 is big but with a big lunge out of it, looks like she just kept it in bounds – solid split positions – rudi to loso, a bit of crossed legs, solid loso – front full to layout, whips around the layout a bit

Higgins – BB – Nebraska – hits candle mount – beat to sheep, actually not a bad position on that sheep – bhs bhs loso, can’t save it and falls. Nebraska will be counting a fall now on beam with three to go.

Knight – FX – Illinois – front lay to front 2/1, a slight stagger on landing but covers it well with a little turn – went for a hofner-hibbs there (illusion double) – 1.5 to layout –

Davis – BB – Nebraska – switch to straddle 1/4, nice switch position but straddle 1/4 was short – bhs loso series, secure – kickover 1/2 and does an excellent job saving it, large break but miraculous she stayed on the beam. side aerial to full, stuck.

Final rotatiom getting started with Iowa and Minnesota

Gilchrist – BB – Iowa – bhs to back pike series – leg-up break on a stag ring – hitch kick to side aerial, small correction – side somi, hit – gainer pike with a stagger stick

Koch – FX – Minn – front 2/1 to front tuck, short on the front tuck with a slide back – split leap full to wolf full, a bit short – bhs layout full side pass – rudi, hit, controlled landing. 9.825

Nick – BB – Iowa – bhs loso, confident opening – aerial to beat jump, landed without one foot on the aerial and minimized issue – 1.5 with a hop forward. 9.775

Sonier – FX – Minn – split jump 1.5 and it’s actually real, like around and hit split. double pike, chest just a bit down, which leads to the step forward – switch to straddle – front full to layout, just a bit of arch in the layout – 1.5 to layout, hit. 9.800

Killian – BB – Iowa – bhs loso, small adjustment – front tuck, another small check – switch to switch, pretty solid back leg position there – 2/1 and sticks. Good. 9.850

Fortman – FX – Minn – L turn double, not quite around – front lay to rudi, love the extended position on that front layout – switch ring to switch 1/2 – front lay to front full with a dance out – nice technique in this routine. 9.850

Vance – BB – Iowa – bhs loso, covers with arm wave – another kickover 1/2 making an appearance today – side aerial to tuck full with a small slide. 9.825

Nebraska has to count a 9.325 and a 9.175 on beam and finds itself down more than a point to Illinois, 146.700 to 145.525 going to the final rotation.

Hooten – FX – Minn – excellent full in, good control on landing – switch side to popa, solid extensions and clear finishing position – front full to front pike, just a bit steppy, nice elevation in front full – double tuck, a tad deep, controls the landing, Strong. 9.950. Well.

NC State goes 48.450 on vault to Pitt’s 47.925 on bars, counting a fall there.

Kaji – BB – Iowa – full turn, smooth – bhs loso, good extension, lean to the side – cat leap to side aerial – split jump to split jump 3/4, secure – gainer full, slide back. 9.800

Ramler – FX – Minn – split ring jump full, a little out of control on landing – double pike, comes up short, medium step forward – switch ring to switch 1/2, is it weird that her leaps are better on beam than on floor? – 1.5 to layout, small arch on layout – 1.5 through to 2/1, very solid ending, under control. 9.800

Kenlin – BB – Iowa – bhs loso series, well extended, secure – switch to switch 1/2 with a leg-up check – aerial, very nice – bhs bhs 1.5, well she’s already got the college stick down, tries to sell it, a step.

Loper – FX – Minn – front lay to rudi, good legs on rudi, controlled landing – switch ring to split leap full – 2.5, controls the step forward out of it – 1.5 to front lay, a little steppy

Iowa will finish with a very impressive 196.450 here, though it will be Michigan with the win, which is going to get close to a 197.

Or exceed it. 197.025 for Minnesota after a 9.950 for Loper. Scores got a bit funky in places but not too terrible. Ramler and Loper and Hooten’s floor were excellent. Iowa’s floor a big highlight.

Final rotation for Nebraska and Illinois about to begin.

Townes – BB – Illinois – switch to straddle 1/4, some back leg on switch but straddle was nice and high – kickover, holds it with an arm wave – secure loso series – cat leap to side aerial to tuck full, stuck landing.

Curtis FX – nebraska – big lift into double pike, slide back – front full to layout, solid extended position in the layout – switch ring to switch 1/2 – double tuck, keeps it mostly controlled, maybe a little adjustment. 9.800

Borden – BB – Illinois – aerial to front handspring to straddle 1/4, cool series as always, a bit slow in connecting the aerial to the front hs – beat jump to sheep, small lean – front lay full dismount, leans to hold the stick. 9.775

SO GLAD I turned on Pitt/NC State to see that vault injury from Pitt on a handpring front pike.

Lorange – FX – Nebraska – doubel pike, lunge back and OOB – front lay to front full, looks like another OOB there – switch ring to switch 1/2 – back 1.5 to front lay, a bit of legs

Knight – BB – Illinois – candle mount to back flexibility showcase – switch to split, shorter on the split position – side aerial to bhs and off line and falls – we do get the cool side somi to back tuck full series –

Roby – FX – Nebraska – full in, solid landing, very small step, some chest down – dobuel tuck, a hair deep witha hop to the side – did I miss something? Why is this a 9.1? Oh, no combo pass, not enough saltos.

Noonan – BB – Nebraska – bhs loso series, solidly landed – switch, good back leg, slow into connection with loso – beat to what looked like an attempted double stag but sort of bailed from the position – stuck gainer full. 9.600

Higgins – FX – Nebraska – front 2/1, gets it around but a shuffle to the side and some crossed legs throughout – switch side to popa – double pike, looks like one foot slipped out from under her for a fall. And now she’s limping off after her routine. So that’s not ideal.

Scott – BB – Illinois – very high kickover front, connected to bhs with an arm wave correction – switch to split ring, another little lean – high beat jump, with INTENT – gainer full, stuck.

Piringer – FX – Nebraska – hits her DLO, a little steppy on landing, chest down – back 1.5 to layout, nearly has the landing, small step – switch sdie to popa, solid positions – double pike, overcooks it somewhat with a slide.

Takekawa – BB – Illinois – side aerial to bhs, solid, very slight knee bend in bhs – switch to gainer loso, huge break, bend at the hips, does well to save it and stay on – bhs gainer full, stuck. 9.800 is quite high for that major bend.

Press – FX – Nebraska – DLO, hits it, slide back, stays in bounds – split leap full, a bit low on split but rises into a popa – back 1.5 to layout, took a funky route there but hits the elements – front lay to front full, holds the landing.

Looks like we’ll have Illinois finishing at 195.475, while Nebraska will get into the 193s once Press’s score is in. It’s a 193.400 final for Nebraska.

OK, let’s all meet over at Part 2.

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