All posts by balancebeamsituation

2018 Freshmen – Georgia

Around these parts, October means freshman previews, a chance to open up boxes filled with brand new bars specialists and make overly optimistic assessments of what inevitably glowing contributions will be made by the first years.

(I still find it awkward to use the word freshmen because when I was in college we weren’t allowed to say that because of sexism. We had to say first years. And then I graduated and realized I’m from California and no one else is bothered even a little bit. So…freshmen it is? I guess? )

The University of Georgia brings in a class of four this year to learn the ways of the Kupoculan, the first four that will be theirs and their alone: Emily Schild, Marissa Oakley, Ashley Foss, and Madison McPherson.

Meanwhile, these are the routines Georgia returns from last season  for a quick glance at what glaring openings exist that the freshmen are going to be required to fill.

Snead – 9.915
Johnson – 9.860
Dickson – 9.845
Marino – 9.825
Snead – 9.890
Dickson – 9.865
Johnson – 9.835
Vaculik – 9.825
Sanders – 9.785
Babalis – 9.875
Vega – 9.840
Sanders – 9.820
Dickson – 9.790
Snead – 9.756
Marino – 9.930
Dickson – 9.905
Vega – 9.850
Babalis – 9.850
Snead – 9.795
Emily Schild

Schild is expected to be the jewel of this freshman class, one of those much-sought second-tier elites who are considered so valuable in NCAA because they have the elite skill set and required precision and details but ideally without suffering from too aggressive a case of Elite Burnout Syndrome. It doesn’t always work that way, but that’s the idea, and that’s the idea with Schild.

Based on what Schild is capable of doing and the number of new routines Georgia needs this year (realistically 7-10 competition sets), the goal for her contribution will be the all-around.

Bars was Schild’s showcase event in elite, because of Everest Bars, and we can expect her to be a significant late-lineup contributor there for Georgia. As we’ve lived through, it’s not always a 1:1 ratio of a high D-score in elite : good scores in NCAA, and there are some handstands and feet to clean up here, but this should still become a very strong set when pared down to NCAA difficulty. Continue reading 2018 Freshmen – Georgia


2018 Returning Routine Rankings

As the process of preparing for the 2018 season forges ahead (next stop: team-by-team freshman previews), I have ranked the top 32 teams based on how they would score in a meet using only the routines that return from the 2017 season.

It’s a method of evaluating which teams are currently best suited to succeed in 2018 using proven routines already at their disposal, as well as how many useful routines teams will need to get from transfers and freshmen to replace some of the dumpier backup scores from last season. Are they already flush with 9.850s? Or would they have to count some 9.6s if the freshmen don’t come through?

RQSs are used when available. When not available, season average is used. Most teams do return at least five people who competed once on each piece last season to fill out a full event score, but if they lack a fifth score from 2017, scores from the previous season are used. For instance, Oklahoma returns only four people who competed on floor last season, but Alex Marks did compete floor in 2016 for 9.700, so that score is used. Those instances are marked by **.

When there are no scores from previous seasons to be used, event totals are filled out with a “replacement average,” the composite average of all gymnasts who competed that event for that team last season but didn’t make the final lineup. Basically, it’s an approximation of what a typical “replacement level” routine should score for that team on that event. 

1. FLORIDA – 197.959
McMurtry – 9.950
Slocum – 9.945
Boren – 9.925
Baker – 9.898
Hundley – 9.850

Chant – 9.831
Alexander – 9.804
Gowey – 9.800
Cheney – 9.750

McMurtry – 9.930
Hundley – 9.925
Baker – 9.880
Boren – 9.860
Gowey – 9.850

Chant – 9.820
McLaughlin – 9.800

McMurtry – 9.925
Boren – 9.900
Gowey – 9.895
Hundley – 9.880
Baker – 9.855

McLaughlin – 9.845
Cheney – 9.735

Baker – 9.945
Boren – 9.945
Hundley – 9.885
Slocum – 9.870
McMurtry – 9.846

McLaughlin – 9.805
Gowey – 9.700
Chant – 9.338

The upcoming season looks like Florida’s best chance to win a title in the post-Rhonda era so far because they return every lineup routine from last season, as well as adding a few famous friends to the mix.

2. OKLAHOMA – 197.790
Nichols – 9.955
Dowell – 9.935
Jackson – 9.900
DeGouveia – 9.830
Marks – 9.815
Nichols – 9.960
Lehrmann – 9.910
Dowell – 9.905
Catour – 9.900
Craus – 9.850
Nichols – 9.955
Brown – 9.910
Catour – 9.880
Lehrmann – 9.855
Jackson – 9.825
Nichols – 9.965
Jackson – 9.960
Dowell – 9.910
Brown – 9.870
Marks – 9.700**

The departures of the Capps/Wofford/Jones crew mean that the defending champs do not return the same level of depth as Florida to fill out lineups and will need to come up with two new routines on each event to erase some of the entirely un-Oklahoma scores at the bottom of these lists.

3. LSU – 197.676
Edney – 9.910
Hambrick – 9.905
Harrold – 9.890
Finnegan – 9.855
Priessman – 9.855

Kelley – 9.825
Cannamela – 9.820

Priessman – 9.925
Edney – 9.900
Hambrick – 9.885
Finnegan – 9.880
Harrold – 9.855
Finnegan – 9.945
Hambrick – 9.900
Macadaeg – 9.900
Edney – 9.875
Li – 9.755

Priessman – 9.525

Hambrick – 9.930
Kelley – 9.925
Edney – 9.870
Finnegan – 9.866
Harrold – 9.850

Priessman – 9.685
Kirby – 9.625

LSU has a hearty-enough returning crop, though the lack of Gnat scores in particular drops them down to third in the returning rankings. That unflinching beam lineup will have to be reformulated a little this season with a couple new sets.

4. UTAH – 197.293
Skinner – 9.925
Merrell-Giles – 9.855
Lewis – 9.850
Lee – 9.840
Roberts – 9.785

Tessen – 9.783
Schwab – 9.775
Muhaw – 9.705
McNatt – 9.688
Reinstadtler – 9.500

Skinner – 9.905
Lewis – 9.880
Lee – 9.845
Reinstadtler – 9.840
Merrell-Giles – 9.835

Schwab – 9.825
Tessen – 9.808

Skinner – 9.900
Lee – 9.890
Reinstadtler – 9.850
Merrell-Giles – 9.840
McNatt – 9.838

Stover – 9.830
Schwab – 9.775

Skinner – 9.965
Lewis – 9.890
Reinstadtler – 9.875
Roberts – 9.845
Merrell-Giles – 9.840

Tessen – 9.825
Lee – 9.775
Schwab – 9.763

Utah fares quite well in returning routines, having lost only Baely Rowe’s sets from last season, and should have its pick of current routines and injury-comeback routines to fill out the majority of lineups without needing to expect too, too much from the freshmen. Continue reading 2018 Returning Routine Rankings

2018 NCAA Roster Changes

An account of all the comings and goings and various soap operas that have happened to NCAA rosters since last season.

All roster changes from the 2017 squads (including graduations, transfers, medical retirements, and mysterious disappearances) are noted in each team’s section.

*When I say “graduated,” I’m using it as a catch-all to mean the four years of competition eligibility have expired, even if they’re currently still in school for a fifth year.

 Chayse Capps
Reagan Hemry
Charity Jones
Kara Lovan
Nicole Turner
McKenzie Wofford
Megan Thompson  Junior
Jordan Draper
Abigail Matthews
Evy Schoepfer
Anastasia Webb
Carly Woodard
Ashley Hiller Junior, from Florida
Sydney Ewing
Ashleigh Gnat
Shae Zamardi
Kaitlyn Szafranski Junior, transfer to Arizona State
Reagan Campbell
Bridget Dean
Christina Desiderio
Sami Durante
Sarah Edwards
Olivia Gunter
Gracen Standley
Claire Boyce
Lacy Dagen Junior, transfer to Oregon State
Ashley Hiller Junior, transfer to Oklahoma
Ericha Fassbender Ineligible
Peyton Ernst Sophomore, transfer to Alabama
Alyssa Baumann
Vanasia Bradley
Jazmyn Foberg
Abigail Hair
Megan Skaggs
Nicole Webb
Angi Cipra
Mikaela Gerber
Hallie Mossett
Maria Caire  Sophomore
Madison Preston  Junior, medical retirement
Nia Dennis
Sofia Gonzalez
Rebecca Karlous
Savannah Kooyman
Kendal Poston
Pauline Tratz
Lilia Waller
Baely Rowe
Alexia Burch
Sydney Soloski
Katie Bailey
Amanda Jetter
Keely McNeer
Mary Lillian Sanders
Aja Sims
Mackenzie Valentin
Jenna Bresette Junior
Caitlin Cole Sophomore
Kylie Dickson
Lexie Graber
Bailie Key
Alonza Klopfer
Peyton Ernst Sophomore, from Florida
Jennie Laeng
Ashley Lambert
Alexa Clark Junior
Megan Kuo Junior
Laura Oh Sophomore
Kami Shows Junior
Makayla Curtis
Anika Dujakovich
Karley Hutchinson
Torri Hutchinson
Kynsee Roby
Megan Verceles Carr
Kaitlyn Duranczyk
Janae Janik
Alex Yacalis
Emily Liddle Senior
Rachel Kaplan
Jennifer Oh
Geneva Thompson
Hannah Willmarth
Rachel Fielitz
Julia Ross
Lynnzee Brown
Emily Glynn
Mia Sundstrom
Nicole Artz
Talia Chiarelli
Lauren Farley
Sam Javanbakht
Syd Townsend

Continue reading 2018 NCAA Roster Changes

Things Are Happening – October 13, 2017

A. Morgan Hurd is world champ, BTW

That happened. It needs to be addressed. It’s very exciting, even if the all-around competition itself was a little “where is everyone else?”

It felt like a normal all-around competition, but where the lead group of six suddenly went missing right before the meet and we were just left with everyone else. Still, it made up for that by being super close and featuring a group of frontrunners that was very easy to support and for whom it is very easy to enjoy success. A highlight of a somewhat trashy worlds.

Plus, Hurd will be a great example in all future “nationals means nothing” arguments because nationals means nothing. Almost as little as Classic.

If you’re me, you’ve already started casually pondering “What’s the 2018 team going to be?”-related questions and then died from thinking about it. I know that we always say, “That team is going to be impossible to pick!” and then it ends up being super possible to pick because of gymnastics. But also, you guys. When the current world champion is just in the maybe pile…

Which brings us to…

B. Simone’s Unvacation

We can’t really say comeback, because she never officially left, but Simone has taken the next step in returning from her…extended, pretty stressful-seeming vacation?…by detailing her plan for 2018 competitions.  Basically, she watched #trashworlds and was like, “Alright, enough of that racket. Mama’s home!” Continue reading Things Are Happening – October 13, 2017

2018 NCAA Schedule

The gymnastics season is dead, long live the gymnastics season!

The world championship ended four days ago, which is like four months, which is like 50 years. It was forever ago, and it’s high time that we move on and start looking at an NCAA season that is a mere 85 days away, which is like two days, which is like a second.

It’s happening!

Preparations for the NCAA season begin with the schedule. At this point, enough schools except Alabama and the Iowas have released their full slates that we can now put together a fairly complete picture of the season to come. Continue reading 2018 NCAA Schedule

Live from Worlds Day 7 – Event Finals Part 2

This is it! The final day of worlds. It’s a little wistful. I mean, this has been #trashworlds, but it has still been worlds. Five more medals to award today, including many of the best ones. Updates at the bottom.


The Koreans got the best draw in this one, with Yang and Kim finishing in the last two spots, while other medal contenders Shirai and Asato have the first two spots.

Continue reading Live from Worlds Day 7 – Event Finals Part 2

Live from Worlds Day 6 – Event Finals Part 1

Today we’ll have the first five event finals, beginning with the men’s Kenzo final, followed by women’s vault, men’s horse, women’s bars, and men’s strongies. New updates at the BOTTOM.


9 in the final because of the Bram/Tomas issue, a very “let’s just avoid a controversy” decision so that fewer people are complaining. Tomas had originally qualified until Bram was allowed to go again. It was a situation that was no one’s fault except Gymnova’s, so they decided to make everyone a winner, sort of.

Montreal has been asked if they are ready about 150 times. I feel like they’re ready?

No warmup for event finals, which is so so so stupid and unnecessary.

Gonzalez – FX – front double pike 1/2 out, short small hop – front full to front 2.5 second pass, just hopping a little on these – double double tuck, solid position – just a bit of a struggle up to Japanese handstand – finishes 3/1, a little under-rotated. Good hit set, though I wouldn’t expect it to medal.


Verhofstad – FX – sticks first pass – back 2.5 to front 2/1, small hop – back 2.5 to half, hop in place – double double tuck, small slide, chest way down – 2/1, stuck – sticks final pass 3/1 as well. That was basically the best he can do. He should be pleased.

14.333 for Bram, ahead of Tomas.

Kenzo – FX – triple twisting double layout amazing – triple twisting double tuck, same – really focusing on the twisting form today – gets more ragged in fourth pass with slight underrotation, so we’ll see about that – back 3.5 to front full, small hop – pretty much sticks his quad. Twisting form deteriorates as he moves later in his routine and into the more difficult twisting elements, but these are fairly minor deductions and that routine should win gold.

Bar graphs to show you which number is higher than the other. THANK YOU SO MUCH.

15.633 for Kenzo. No one is catching that.

Dolgopyat – FX – double front with 1.5, cool – a front 2/1 goes a little awry for him with a low landing, he does a quad as well but not Kenzo’s – solid routine – finishes with a 3/1, short with a step to the side – not quite as precise in his landings as he needed to be, but very good difficulty, which may help him. Too many crossed legs for my taste.

14.533 puts him in second on difficulty.

Moldauer – this kit is very US Soccer – small hop on opening pass – sticks double arabian half out – sticks front 2/1 to front 1/1 – flares are fast and extended and excellent, big cheer – back 2.5 to half, stuck – takes 2/1 side pass right into the corner, he couldn’t step and didn’t – small hop on 3/1. Excellent clean and stuck set, but he’s always going to have to rely on other people to make errors because of his difficulty.

14.500 for Moldayer puts him into third behind Dolgopyat. That will be controversial. He did get rewarded in E by nearly 7 tenths more, but it’s hard to enjoy Dolgopyat over Moldauer watching those two routines back to back.

Larduet – small hop on opening pass – ManBiles, not as good this time, hop back – front 2/1 to layout, hop forward – double arabian 1/2 out, fine but hop – double front, bounces out – landing reminiscent of the AA final – 2.5 to front full, great height in second element – double arabian, near stick. Probably didn’t have the landings with that one.

14.100 for Manrique

Whittenburg – front 2/1 to double front, very deep but no idea how he got it around in the first place- double front pike, large hop – double double lay, hop – 2.5, hop – double double tuck, hop – double arabian 1/2 out, finally a good pass but not a good routine for him. Too many landing errors, especially at the beginning.

14.166 for Whittenburg.

Karimi – Little baby Kazakhstan – back 3.5 to frotn 1.5, hop – swins a little to keep the landing on second pass, same on third double double tuck and on 2.5 to front 2/1, fighting to keep sticks but probably giving away more in arm waves – 3/1 hands down! Oh Karimi!

13.266 and into last for now.

So Moldauer on the bubble with Kim Hansol to go, who can definitely get a medal here.

Kim – good first pass, double front pike 1/2, hop – small hops though. controlling passes well – double double tuck, good – LOL balance check in the corner – finishes with a very short 3/1 with a large lunge forward – did that balance check in the corner cost him a medal? Seemed to throw him off going to the last pass.

It’s a 14.100 for Kim, and a medal for Moldauer! Very cool for him. I would have had him second actually, but I recognize that his difficulty isn’t really there. Still shows that execution still has a place!

Gold – Shirai
Silver – Dolgopyat
Bronze – Moldauer

Now I wish Bram had won a medal too! A tough 4th for a really strong routine.


Where is Team Swiss Cowbell today for Giulia?

Shallon Olsen has apparently submitted the TTY to be named after her. The better question is…why?

Steingruber – 1 – Rudi – OK, probably weaker than qualification but better than the AA, a little short with a hop forward but a pretty small step to the side, chest well down though.

Steingruber – 2 – hits DTY, similar landing with chest down, step back. But a fairly solid set of two vaults.

14.466 average. Weaker scores than her qualification performance, and appropriately so.

Olsen – 1 – she’s putting up the number for the Amanar here. YEOUCH. Landed somwhere in between the double and the 2.5, basically sideways, hands down, extremely dangerous landing, but she looks to be OK. Shouldn’t have attempted that vault. Should have done the DTY.

Olsen – 2- Cheng – fairly comfortable, rather piked and bent knees, but a controlled landing.

14.233 average. That’s a little high for me.

Paseka – 1 – insane Cheng, even more insane than usual – legs all over the place and chest down, should have a weaker score than Olsen’s. Two steps to the side.

14.700 for her first vault. 8.7 E which is also way too high for that.

Paseka – 2 – Amanar – fairly good Amanar, similar to qualification, hop forward. Legs on block – and bent throughout –

Average 14.850 after a 15.000 second vault. She’s into first. Montreal will probably burn if she wins gold for that Cheng.

Wang – 1 – Tsuk 2/1 with step back, going with these others really reinforces her comparative lack of amplitude and distance. 14.500 for that.

Wang – 2- Rudi – quite low with a large lunge forward and out of the area. Won’t be the score she needed. It hasn’t been a great worlds for her, having to carry the flag as the only healthy Chinese AAer even though she isn’t really healthy at this point.

14.350 for Wang, currently 3rd.

Carey – 1 – Amanar – huge vault but a poor landing – large lunge forward and crazy flying legs on the lunge – won’t get the score she needs for that first one. Although, her score should still be higher than others because of her amplitude and distance, but I doubt it will be because of the poor landing.

14.800. Still high, but needed more.

Carey – 2 – Tsuk 2/1 – good one, small step back, that one was better than qualification but she needs a 9.300 E to catch Paseka, the highest E we’ve seen on vault in this championship. Though, if her Amanar was 9.0, this should be 9.3.

14.766 average for Carey, just behind Paseka.

Black – 1 – handspring lay full, too much pike and legs throughout and a hop forward, but solid.

Black – 2 – Tsuk 1.5, cleaner, lunge forward, but shouldn’t have the difficulty there.

14.416 and currently into 4th.

CHUSO – 1 – she has posted the rudi to start – does the full again, smart – solid vault, small hop, leg form – 14.433.

Chuso – 2 – tsuk 1.5, another good landing – she has improved into this worlds but with this set of vaults probably doesn’t have the difficulty for a medal.

14.366 average

Miyakawa – 1 – better rudi than the first day, crunched down too much but with not too much of a hop to the side – 14.500

Miyakawa – 2 – Falls on DTY. So that’s that.

So Paseka wins, with that Cheng, which is going to sting for a while because form, though Carey had that major landing error on her Amanar. I still think Carey was probably the better one (and if the Amanar is a 9.0, then why is the Cheng a 9.133), but it was very close. Carey would have had a better argument to being cheated out of something if she had landed the Amanar the way she can. That was a major landing error.

Gold – Paseka
Silver – Carey
Bronze – Steingruber

Paseka pulled it out. When no one thought she would land those vaults at worlds, especially based on her everything about her.

Medal ceremony break! Medal ceremonies after the first two and then after the next three. I love the Japanese national anthem, but doesn’t it always sound like there should be more of it? Abrupt ending.

Good bronze for Steingruber. Reward for getting her vaults all the way back, even though she can do a little better than she did today.


Weng Hao missed the memo that he was supposed to stop in the middle of the introduction stage. Awesome start.

Naddour – short opening hs – good one hand and one pommel work – a leg break in there, uncharacteristic – works through it comfortably – hits dismount. Solid. He said in the mixed zone that if he was going first he probably wouldn’t upgrade but would if he were going later and had people who had already hit to beat. Shame he drew 1st. Not sure I’m on board with that strategy.


Betoncelj – one-arm one pommel swing and immediately off. Gets back up and works through the rest of his routine cleanly, but another one bites the dust. We’re 1 for 2 so far. PH finals aren’t fun unless there are at least four falls, right? Is that what it is?


Belyavskiy – another one struggling on opening hs but works through it – clean form quick travels – secure set, very nice, no real form breaks.

15.100 for Belyaskiy – more difficulty and cleaner than Naddour this time.

Xiao – he does flare work, so it’s always going to be more of a crowd pleaser – very difficult dismount, has to rush through a little to get it finished but he does, quite nice, and his handstand up on one pommel was actually to handstand, unlike the others we have seen. Solid hit.

15.066 just behind Belyavskiy. (I might have though Xiao’s was better, he says quietly)

Verniaiev – look ed like he was going to make a mistake on handstand travel but didn’t – he got through most of his routine quite cleanly and then came off toward the end. Oh Oleg. Not his worlds. Finishes up, rest of routine strong.


Weng – good first work up to handstand, struggles a tad the second time but not major – smooth work – great quick hand placements – even standing out amonf the rest in this final – everything was going perfectly until a hesitation working up to handstand and a minor hip drop. Do we expect a long judging delay as they work through what to do with that?

We do. Conference occurring now.

Long conference occurring now.

14.500 for Weng, into 4th. Boos coming. Yep, 5 tenths lower D than his qualification score, and that’s why.

Max – very very good work, no significant errors, very comfortable routine, and had the highest difficulty coming in. Should be the winner here.

15.441 for Max and into first. Appropriate.

Merdinyan – another hit! Difficult dismount, solid leg form throughout and keeps his rhythm. Shows a variety of skills and positions. Good set. Just lacks the difficulty to get into the 15s, which is what it’s taking to medal here.

Belyavskiy will get his medal

Gold – Whitlock
Silver – Belyavskiy
Bronze – Xiao

Whitlock the class of the group, but only two falls in the final, which is pretty good. Naddour comes 4th, had a very noticeable leg break and a 6.3 D, lower than any of the medalists. Needed to have upgraded if he was capable of doing that in a hit routine.


Varinska – stalder shap to pak, clean – toe shap to clear hip 1/1, a little late – tkatchev half to jaeger, very well done! – tuck full dismount with a hop. She has been pleasantly surprisingly on in this event on bars throughout.

14.583. Basically exactly how she qualified.

Derwael – staled tkatchev piked – derwael-fenton to yezhova, good – stalder shap to bhardwaj, solid – toe shap 1/2 – good hs – hops forward on tuck full dismount. Maybe a little close on her bhardwaj and the hop on dismount, but other than that it was identical to her previous routines. Very little variation through worlds.

15.033. She finally broke the 15 mark!

Ilyankova – very close on piked hindorff – reg hindorff to pak to shap to hip 1/2 to yezhova, all strong – toe full – tuck full with step forward. A good set, though that close catch on her first release should put her behind Derwael.

14.900 for Ilyankova. Sounds about right.

Eremina – nabz to pak to stalder shap 1/2, good – inbar 1/2 to piked jaeger  – a short handstand in there on the half turn – toe full – tuck full dismount. Much better than AA. The stalder shap 1/2 had a form break in it, a couple things to take, but not too much. She got her full difficulty by connecting that skill, though, which will be a big deal for her total.

15.100 and she’s ahead of Derwael. Interesting. Hugs, but you can tell Nina is disappointed. Very close between the two.

Luo – toe shap to pak to toe shap 1/2, solid – nice toes and hs – full piros, pretty well vertical – nice piked jager, a short cast 1/2 – ling 1/2 may have been a little late, and then a larger hop forward on DLO, which will hurt.

14.566. Unlikely to have the difficulty anyway, and the dismount mistake took her out of it.

Fan – inbar 1/1 to shap to pak to stalder shap to gienger, nice combo – inbar 1/2, slight hesitation – good piro finishing positions and step on the Fan dismount. Strong set, but we’ll see how much that pause on the inbar 1/2 before working into the next skill gets her. Good save, though.

15.166. HMMMMMM. I don’t know about that. Big difficulty, two tenths more than Eremina or Derwael, but it wasn’t as strong a routine.

Seitz – toe shap to Ricna, good – jaeger – stalder tkatchev piked to pak, clean – toe shap 1/2 – her leg form has improved a lot – toe full to tuck full with a hop. Solid. May just miss it on the difficulty.


Very high quality final with one to go, Ashton. She can’t get a 15 with her normal routine.

Locklear – toe full and completely loses her leg form, unexpected mistake – and then a toe half and she comes off the bar! I have NEVER seen her look that off. She has missed before but not looked that off right from the start. Weird. Step on tuck full.

While Valeri can say, “SEE I TOLD YOU” about the Hurd decision, the Locklear decision will come under more scrutiny because of this miss, whether fair or not.

Gold – Fan
Silver – Eremina
Bronze – Derwael

Very close between the three of them to me. They could have gone in any order, though they were the three best out there. Derwael with Belgium’s first medal.

Good final. Very clean and exciting. One more left! …and it’s rings…

They really shouldn’t do the rings final when everyone is all burnt out.


Colak – very horizonal opening strength positions, a little bit of swing but very little bit – tuck and pikes, solid – cross, pretty even and opens his hands with it – double front pike dismount, stuck. Excellent start to the final.


Radivilov – lots more strongies? some swing and hesitation in a handstand toward the end – double double tuck, small hop.

14.933. Fair, not as strong as Colak in refinement or landing.

Zanetti – very smooth connecting difficult strength elements, small hesitation in handstand but better than qualifiation – just a touch high in a position or two still, though we don’t expect from him – cross is better – huge wobble in handstand – full twisting DLO with a hop. Probably a bit better than qual, but he hasn’t been his medal-contending self this week.

14.900. That’s even a little high for me. He had a major struggle in there.

Abliazin – very flat in strength holds, quite nice – tucks and pikes, clean – OK cross, not the best – very strong hs, second one a little less control – double double layout with small hop. Good one.

15.333 and into first. One tenth higher D than Colak but interesting that he also got higher E.

Ait Said – one handstand struggle – but just one hesitation or two – very good position on the cross, much flatter than Abliazin – DLO 1/1 dismount with the smallest step. Good.

15.258 and into second.

Tulloch – huge difficulty in his strength combinations – He doesn’t have a particularly stragith body position in handstands, which takes away visually from the routine – good strength  – huge struggle in handstand – step forward on dismount. I’d say too many E errors on that one.


Petrounias – the smoothness and lack of swing sets him apart – everything is held for two second, easily and correctly – very flat cross – only very minor handstand hesitations, but a couple – double double tuck, a little chest down with a hop. I expected him to stick, but it’s still the best routine of the final to me.

15.433 and into first. Colak out of the medals.

Liu – good strength obviously, looks a touch higher than the best ones in his holds – cracks his neck during an iron cross like a ham and gets the desired crowd reaction – DLO 1/1, low with a hop.

15.266 for Liu. Just ahead of Ait Said. That will provoke some fury. Maybe his neck muscles are just so big I thought it looked like he wasn’t level, but that dismount should not have warranted that E score for Liu, I’d say. I also don’t understand rings.

GOLD – Petrounias
SILVER – Abliazin

So that does it for the competitions. Medal ceremonies to come. I’ll let you know if anything weird happens.

It didn’t really.

See you tomorrow!


Live from Worlds Day 5 – Women’s All-Around Final

Today, it’s the moment you’ve all been waiting for, maybe. The women’s all-around final, where the US will be attempting to keep a six-year streak of AA titles going. Updates at the bottom.

Here is tonight’s D-Score setup, with Ragan Smith leading the field, though we don’t really get down to those outside of the medal hunt until the people in the mid-21s.

Continue reading Live from Worlds Day 5 – Women’s All-Around Final

Live from Worlds Day 4 – Men’s All-Around Final

In the absence of The Kohei, the men’s all-around final has turned into a utopian garden of equality where anyone and everyone can medal. This is false, but also basically true. We have no idea what’s going to happen. This should finally be Oleg’s title, but also…will it?

By difficulty, Verniaiev and Larduet are well ahead of the pack, and because both of them have among the highest levels of execution in the final, their performances will decide how this event plays out. Those with close to the same difficulty, or those like Moldauer who have the execution but not the difficulty, will need some Oleg-in-qualifying level errors to get into the gold hunt. Continue reading Live from Worlds Day 4 – Men’s All-Around Final

Live from Worlds Day 3 – Women’s Qualification

On to the third day, when the women fully take center stage. Let’s hope a rift in the spacetime continuum doesn’t emerge in the middle of floor today! By popular demand, I’ll be going back to the usual format of new updates at the bottom. [I FORGOT I SAID THIS! OOPS! It’s fixed now.]


Subdivision 3 will bring us the Netherlands, Romania, and Switzerland! As has been traditional, the good part is going to be the very beginning.

Schedules have been contradictory, some saying this session begins at 1, and some saying 1:30. We don’t look close right now, so we’re thinking 1:30.

Other news is that Tomas Gonzalez has been accepted into the floor final, (he originally qualified before the redo), so now there will be 9.


RED ALERT: Larisa is down on the floor getting her knee looked at in the touch warmup.

Larisa Iordache is being carried off the floor exercise.

Meanwhile, the competition is going on.

Lieke BB – good mount, side aerial to side aerial combination – aerial to sheep, secure – large check on an L turn but saved it – gorgeous double turn, lovely – CRAP, falls on side somi – straight jump is nice –

Crisan – FX – split leap 1.5, good position – double tuck first pass – full in, small step – single L turn – switch full – front tuck through to 2/1, bounce – switch leap – split ring leap, leaps look good, won’t have the tumbling difficulty to get a big score here, though – lunge back on double pike, but nice set for her. Good to see.

How do we even go on without Larisa?

Thorsdottir – BB – split leap side aerial to korbut, gorgeous obviously – illusion, solid – aerial, small check – good leaps – L turn to switch to Y tun to full turn, close to getting all the CV, just a pause at the end, 3/1, struggle with a lunge.

Ponor – FX – goes for the DLO 1/1, form and short with a lunge – whips to double tuck, two steps back – switch 1/2 – front tuck through to double pike, small step – split leap .5, short of split – 2.5, crazy legs and OOB. Continue reading Live from Worlds Day 3 – Women’s Qualification