Tag Archives: Mykayla Skinner

Best Routine of Conference Championships Poll

Congratulations to the week 10 champion, Stacie Webb’s beam, the first 10 in Southern Utah history, which beat out Katelyn Ohashi’s beam in second place and Kiana Winston’s beam in third. It was the week of beam.

ROUTINE of the WEEK 1st 2nd 3rd
Week 1 Skinner, FX Edney, VT Nichols, UB
Week 2 Ward, VT PP Lee, BB Hambrick, FX
Week 3 Artz, FX Childers, BB Skinner, VT
Week 4 Ross, UB McMurtry, VT PP Lee, UB
Week 5 Gardiner, BB Ward, VT Winston, FX
Week 6 PP Lee, UB Slocum, VT Jackson, FX
Week 7 Ross, BB Price, UB Guerrero, BB
Week 8 McMurtry, FX Mossett, FX Lehrmann, UB
Week 9 McMurtry, VT Aufiero, UB Deans, FX
Week 10 Webb, BB Ohashi, BB Winston, BB
Conference Champs

To the vote for the conference championships, meets that brought us four more 10.000s, all from gymnasts who have already received 10s on those events this season. Be more interesting, humanity. Continue reading Best Routine of Conference Championships Poll

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Best Routine of Week 9 Poll

Congratulations to our week 8 champion, Alex McMurtry’s floor, which used a boost from Team Florida to run away with the title ahead of Hallie Mossett’s floor in second. In an upset, Nicole Lehrmann’s bars 10 outpaced McKenzie Wofford’s bars 10 for the third position by a mere 9 votes.

ROUTINE of the WEEK 1st 2nd 3rd
Week 1 Skinner, FX Edney, VT Nichols, UB
Week 2 Ward, VT PP Lee, BB Hambrick, FX
Week 3 Artz, FX Childers, BB Skinner, VT
Week 4 Ross, UB McMurtry, VT PP Lee, UB
Week 5 Gardiner, BB Ward, VT Winston, FX
Week 6 PP Lee, UB Slocum, VT Jackson, FX
Week 7 Ross, BB Price, UB Guerrero, BB
Week 8 McMurtry, FX Mossett, FX Lehrmann, UB
Week 9

On to week 9! A week marked by at least one 10 on every event, twelve scores of 9.975 or higher, and thirty-seven scores of 9.950 or higher. Thirty-seven.


1. Ashleigh Gnat, LSU – Vault (10.000)


2. Alex McMurtry, Florida – Vault (10.000)


3. Erika Aufiero, Oregon State – Bars (9.975)


4. Maggie Nichols, Oklahoma – Bars (10.000)

LINK – 26:05


5. Kendall Valentin, Eastern Michigan – Bars (9.950)


6. Erin Macadaeg, LSU – Beam (9.950)


7. Katelyn Ohashi, UCLA – Beam (10.000)


8. Chayse Capps, Oklahoma – Beam (10.000)


9. MyKayla Skinner, Utah – Floor (10.000)


10. Nicola Deans, Michigan State – Floor (9.950)


Best Routine of Week 7 Poll

Congratulations to our week 6 champion, Peng Peng Lee’s bars, which won by a billion votes to zero. It was a close-run thing for the remaining spots, however, as Rachel Slocum’s vault took second, just two votes ahead of Ali Jackson’s floor, which was just three votes ahead of Alex McMurtry’s bars, itself only two votes ahead of Maggie Nichols’ floor.

ROUTINE OF THE WEEK 1st 2nd 3rd
Week 1 Skinner, FX Edney, VT Nichols, UB
Week 2 Ward, VT PP Lee, BB Hambrick, FX
Week 3 Artz, FX Childers, BB Skinner, VT
Week 4 Ross, UB McMurtry, VT PP Lee, UB
Week 5 Gardiner, BB Ward, VT Winston, FX
Week 6 PP Lee, UB Slocum, VT Jackson, FX
Week 7

Now, to the vote for week 7, in which the highest score given out to any gymnast was 9.875. No, I’m totally kidding, everyone got a 10 obviously.

(Heads up, no nominees from the GymQuarters meet this weekend because that meet is behind a paywall and not all of you can watch the routines, in case you’re wondering why Maggie Nichols isn’t four of the nominees. I think she’ll survive.) Continue reading Best Routine of Week 7 Poll

Best Routine of Week 3 Poll

Congratulations to our week 2 champion, Britney Ward’s vault, which ran to victory ahead of Peng Peng Lee’s beam in second and Myia Hambrick’s floor in third.

ROUTINE OF THE WEEK 1st 2nd 3rd
Week 1 Skinner, FX Edney, VT Nichols, UB
Week 2 Ward, VT Lee, BB Hambrick, FX
Week 3

Who will take the title for week 3, a week peppered with 10s and 9.975s? (Usual disclaimer: If you don’t make videos of full routines available, I can’t nominate them. Even if they got 9.975. Cough cough, Pac-12 Network.) Continue reading Best Routine of Week 3 Poll

Best Routine of Week 1 Poll

Poll time!

Each week, I’ll put up the top routines of the previous weekend and let you guys vote on which routine wins the award for best of the week. Deciding the nominees is up to me (mwahahahaha) and is based on 3) score, 2) overall quality, and 1) which ones are easily available online—aka, which ones have been uploaded by our dear NastiaFan101. Because, you know, we need to be able to see them in order to vote for them. So if you want to vote for Elizabeth Price…get those meets to start taking place in the present day. With color televisions. And the iron horse.

Feel free to use the comments for reasoning and/or write-in votes.


1. Kennedi Edney, LSU – Vault


2. Maggie Nichols, Oklahoma – Bars

Continue reading Best Routine of Week 1 Poll

Utah 2017

Following last night’s Red Rocks Preview, we understand a lot more about what Utah is planning to say for itself in 2017, so this seems an ideal time to preview lineups and expectations.

UTAH ROSTER 2017
Seniors
Baely Rowe
  • Contributed top UB, BB routines in 2015, 2016
  • Will provide lineup-ready VT and FX as needed
  • 2016 RQS: UB – 9.905, BB – 9.880, VT – 9.835
  • 2016 avg: FX – 9.848
Juniors
Tiffani Lewis
  • Competed VT, UB, FX every week in 2016
  • 2016 RQS: FX – 9.900, UB – 9.845, VT – 9.845
Maddy Stover
  • BB anchor and team-high score in 2016
  • Occasional backup FX in 2016
  • 2016 RQS: BB – 9.900, FX – 9.575
Sophomores
Kari Lee
(redshirt)
  • Torn Achilles in January 2016
  • Weekly VT, BB, FX in 2015
  • 2015 RQS: VT – 9.910, BB – 9.900, FX – 9.890
Shannon McNatt
  • Did not show a competition routine in 2016
Makenna Merrell
  • Frequent FX contributor in 2016
  • Provided occasional VT, BB routines
  • 2016 RQS: FX – 9.850, BB – 9.550
  • 2016 avg: VT – 9.750
Erika Muhaw
  • Competed one VT in 2016 for 9.800
Macey Roberts
  • Transfer from Maryland
  • Contributed VT, FX for Terps in 2016
  • 2016 RQS: FX – 9.840, VT – 9.770
Sabrina Schwab
  • Among top UB, FX routines in freshman season
  • 2016 RQS: FX – 9.910, UB – 9.875
Freshmen
Missy Reinstadtler
  • North Stars
  • Preseason stress fracture, foot
  • 2016 JO Nationals UB champion, 7th AA
  • 2016 Nastia Cup 2nd AA
Mykayla Skinner
  • Desert Lights
  • 2016 Olympic Trials 4th AA
  • 2014 World Championship team
Kim Tessen
  • All-American
  • 2016 JO Nationals UB champion, 2nd AA

Recent History
2016 – 9th
2015 – 2nd
2014 – 7th
2013 – 9th
2012 – 5th
2011 – 5th
2010 – 6th

This slate of recent results seems fine enough, but aside from 2015’s dramatic second-place finish in the Marsden curtain call, Utah has missed Super Six three of the last four years. That’s a first for the program and one that is far from satisfying. Those 9th-place results in 2016 and 2013 are equal for Utah’s weakest finish in the NCAA era, and while that can be attributed to improvements from other teams as much as anything else, that’s cold comfort for a team like Utah. Utah doesn’t finish 9th.

The Utes have the roster in 2017 to restore how everyone felt a year ago after that 2nd place when THE GOLDEN AGE IS BACK AGAIN HURRAH. At least, Utah should expect to return to Super Six this year. That’s not saying it will be simple. Most top teams are adding routines of the same caliber (it’s the year after the Olympics), but among the teams in that turbid mixture called Borderline Super Six, Utah seems the most likely bet. Continue reading Utah 2017

2017 Freshman Preview: Utah

You didn’t expect me to resist the opportunity to use “stab a boob, take a selfie” one more time did you?

Returning Routines – Utah
VAULT
Lewis – 9.845
Rowe – 9.835
Muhaw – 9.800
Lee – 9.750
Merrell – 9.750
BARS
Rowe – 9.905
Schwab – 9.875
Lewis – 9.845
Lee – 9.792
BEAM
Stover – 9.900
Rowe – 9.880
Lee – 9.825
Merrell – 9.592
FLOOR
Schwab – 9.910
Lewis – 9.900
Merrell – 9.850
Rowe – 9.848
Stover – 9.575
Lee – 9.392

Utah’s granary of routines has been mightily depleted after last season’s graduations and the retirement of Samantha Partyka, but there’s also good news for the Utes: all three of this year’s freshmen are legitimate all-arounders from whom we should expect a significant and plentiful harvest. I don’t have trouble coming up with 6+ viable routines on each event.

The most prominent member of Utah’s accomplished freshman trio is, of course, Photoshop Olympian, Twitter cautionary tale, and interpretive vault pioneer, MyKayla Skinner.

Much has been made of the idea that Skinner won’t be as successful in NCAA because of the built-in form deductions in her gymnastics, but I’m not so sure about that. We’ve seen plenty of people thrive in NCAA with less-than-Pavlovian splits, and frankly her form isn’t all that different from many of the JO gymnasts I’ve been watching these last few weeks. Plus, “tweets dumb things” isn’t a deduction in the code of points, so that doesn’t really have anything to do with what scores she should get.

The composition in NCAA will allow Skinner to get rid of her worst skills, with the added bonus of being able to rely on the old “blind them with difficulty” strategy. Of course, all routines starting from 10.0 are supposed to be evaluated equally…and once you stop laughing we can continue with the rest of the preview.

Blinded By Difficulty absolutely needs to be the approach for Skinner. Her success has always been based on her ability to chuck extremely difficult skills, and downgrading significantly—the way many elites do in NCAA—would only expose problems rather than get her higher scores. As we learned from that “Bali, Mali, Chile, Malawi…it’s a simple do the dance (?)” commercial, Skinner’s DTY is cleaner than her Yurchenko timer. That’s insane, but it’s also true. She needs to retain the big skills, and if she does, I see no reason why she won’t get some of the highest scores in the country, particularly on vault and floor.

So I say vault that DTY.

I’d opt for the DTY over the Yurchenko 1/2-on vaults, purely so that we avoid any and all “DID SHE USE BOTH HANDS?” issues and never have to talk about Skinner being the first gymnast to do an Ono on the vaulting table ever again. It would just be a public service. But we’ll see. Continue reading 2017 Freshman Preview: Utah

2016 Olympic Trials Part 1: The Night of Uber Important Water Cups

The competition may be over, but NBC’s coverage is forever. Chilling. The hard truths.

As I wallowed in the stands in San Jose, painfully cut off from the sage judgment of Trautwig and his merry band of colored shapes, I felt lost, bereft, confused. Entirely powerless to interpret the events unfolding before me. Was that disaster “ginormous” or “of epic proportions”? Is Laurie Hernandez “hot stuff” or “one fun kid”? I JUST DON’T KNOW. I could only sit and imagine what eloquent turns of phrase were being inflicted upon the audience at that very moment.

Now, through the magic of the internet, I am in the dark no longer. Won’t you join me for day 1? Once more, into the flames.

Screen Shot 2016-07-13 at 10.22.31 AM

Christ the Redeemer Statue: 1, Brenna Dowell: 0

As the broadcast begins, Trautwig the Redeemer transforms back into his human form to welcome us to San Jose, the Jan Brady of California, and introduce the only three gymnasts competing for spots on the five-woman Olympic team. LOCKS!

He presents Simone Biles, who is good, Gabby Douglas, who is literal trash, and Aly Raisman, who failed like a rotten failure in the all-around in 2012. Because that’s her defining career moment. Continue reading 2016 Olympic Trials Part 1: The Night of Uber Important Water Cups

Secret Classic Podium Training

I haven’t been obsessively refreshing the USAGym youtube page all day. You’ve been obsessively refreshing the USAGym youtube page all day. What is obviously the most important day of your life, Secret Classic podium training, is finally here and the videos are flooding in for our intense dissection needs, providing us with…WAIT.

Has Skinner gotten rid of both tomato-armpit AND stab-a-boob???

THIS WILL NOT STAND. This better just be a podium training acro-through, and she’s saving the difficult and important parts of the routine for competition. Otherwise, I don’t know what I’ll do. Shut up with that full-in dismount whatever, I WANT TOMATO ARMPIT. I mean, we do get “rigor mortis pottery” at the beginning of this video, and then “I’m nervous about my upcoming hip replacement surgery” toward the end, but THAT’S IT. Not good enough. She also appears to have added in her own homage to Ol’ Flappy. Derivative.

In important upgrade news, Laurie Hernandez showed up like a monster to upset the bars cart with this upgraded 6.4 bars routine.

Serious team final implications with this, as it potentially gives Hernandez a second event to help make her case (along with beam). This separates her from the pack of 6.1 bars options (like Biles and Nichols) and helps turn the attention away from vault (and who has an Amanar) and onto what Hernandez can potentially add on bars and beam, which could total more than an Amanar adds anyway. The execution is fine, though not ideal (those damn stalder full legs), so we’ll need to see how this is evaluated to see how much she’s really gaining here. To be a viable bars option, you have to beat Biles by at least a couple tenths since the team could always just put up Biles and be fine. Continue reading Secret Classic Podium Training

Pre-Classic: A Land of Ignorance

Pre-Classic is my favorite part of the elite season because it’s the silliest. We’re all so damn confident about how things are going to go this season despite having seen precisely zero gymnastics from the major and most of the minor contenders. Remember your feelings about Ashton Locklear precisely 365 days ago? Because they were a tumbleweed made of cricket sound effects.

That’s what makes Classic exciting. At this moment, we know nothing, but by the end of podium training, we’ll basically be set and have a good idea of what we’ll see this year. To help fill in the possible picture of who might go to Glasgow to be the trusted attendants in Queen Simone’s Royal Court, here are a few ramblings about what I’ll be watching out for at Classic because I realize I haven’t posted anything that isn’t about Al Trautwig in a long time.  

Amanar Watch 2015: Beyond Biles, Fact or Fiction

Eeeeeeeverybody thinks she has an Amanar this year. We’ll see. We’ve been down this road before. People often like to show up to Classic going, “Sup bitches, I gots me an Amanar,” and then it isn’t so much with the great. See Gowey 2014, Raisman 2010. Still, enough people have past Amanars, current Amanars, possible Amanars, Un-anars, or fantasies about having Amanars that the US should be expecting to cobble together at least three 6.3+ vaults for Worlds. There’s obviously Biles, Dowell has had a 2.5 for years now and needs it, we have Skinner with her social experiment, we know about Raisman and Douglas’s past vaults, Nichols had a Campanar that time, Key has been training one since she was a fetus (You guys! She’s training a Wombanar in there! My aunt’s cousin saw it!), Gowey had that one for a hot second last year but didn’t vault at Pan Ams because of yet another in her Pride Parade of injuries. Right now, there are a lot of possibilities, but we need some facts.

Of this group, a hit 2.5 will probably be the most important for Maggie Nichols. She has elevated herself out of you’re-here-too, Paul Ruggeri, alternating-my-ass-off territory almost solely on the basis of having a Campanar, but if she could legitimately score as a top-three vaulter this summer in competition, that would be a huge boost for her team hopes. She needs to prove that she’s not only a strong AAer, but convincingly top 3 at least somewhere and probably two-wheres. It’s a big competition for Nichols. Conversely, Skinner will be rooting for as few Amanars as possible. The more people with competitive vaults, the less necessary her vault becomes, and she doesn’t have as many competitive events to work with in the first place.

Bring Out Your Bars Specialists 

Last year, Locklear and Kocian made the team to ensure that the US was a little less horrifying on bars, and once again on a team of six, the opportunity can present itself for bars specialist to work her way onto the team and save the day. Though the standard is tougher this year. With Ross continuing to be Ross and Biles, Key, Nichols, and a whole host of other people showing bars D-scores in the low 6s with high-14 totals (6.1 is the new 5.8), anyone hoping to make the team specifically because of bars will need to show significantly higher scoring potential than that. Possible bars specialists need to be scoring clearly into the 15s, otherwise there will be people already on the team for other events who can do the job just as well. So I’m keeping an eye on those scores. That’s why it will be tough for someone like Gowey. She mashed together an upgraded routine for this year (with more upgrade potential still) but maxed out at the 14.7s at Pan Ams. Biles can get that. Desch is in a similar boat. She upgraded like crazy this year to put together some really solid routines, but she’s not in top-three contention on these events.

Douglas will be interesting to watch with regard to the quest for bars 15s. Because she’s Gabby Douglas, she automatically seems like the default bars worker based on her past accomplishments. But, her Jesolo bars routine was very work-in progress. She’ll need to show some development since then to solidify any kind of status on this event. Comparing her score to the incumbent bars workers, the injury-returning Locklear and Kocian, will be telling, though certainly Douglas’s abilities on other events can help her cause.

The crop is deeper this year than it was last year, so there probably isn’t going to be room for a whole gang of bars specialists again. We’re going to see the likes of Locklear, Kocian, and Dowell all trying to out-bars each other for what might not even be one spot. (Biles, Ross, Raisman, Key, Douglas, Nichols, Skinner is a fairly realistic, serious-scoring group of seven to choose from, and it includes none of them. Although, that team may be slightly questionable on bars and could use a boost if someone earns it.) We know Dowell’s top routine has the difficulty edge over everyone, but she’ll have to bring that routine, along with a whole bushel of consistency and a clear scoring edge over the recent world team members in order to overcome the general Martha-thumbs-down feeling that has pervaded her elite career.

Who Is Good At Floor?

Simone is. Aly Raisman is. Aly has spent the last 5 years making teams because of beam and floor, so to solidify her spot on the prospective team, she’s going to need to reinforce her position on floor and emerge as the clear #2 behind Biles and her 19.500. She has the difficulty to do it already back in her routine and looked on track at Jesolo. She’s kind of the Olympic champion, you know. The US has a formidable 1-2 punch with Biles and Raisman on floor, but the third floor worker will be an interesting topic. Key’s scores render her a very strong possiblity, and of course there’s Skinner as well. As on vault, Skinner will need to use Classic to prove that she’s still top three, with Raisman coming in this year to challenge her status a little bit more. Skinner vs. Key on floor should be a fun one. Skinner needs to win that to make her argument. Does someone else pop into possible 15 territory?

These are the questions I want answered. Amanars? How relevant and necessary are the bars specialists? Gabby’s still Gabby, right? And who’s third on floor? I expect all the competitors to do their best to answer them in a timely and clear fashion. As for beam, my impression right now is that it won’t be decisive in team selection. With Biles, Ross, Raisman, Douglas, and Key all seeming like realistic beam options (to varying degrees) who can make the team for other events as well, selection may come down to choosing the team for the other three events and then just using the best beamers from that group, who will probably be the best beamers in the country anyway. It makes it very tough for Baumann, though, since beam is kind of her thing, but she doesn’t have the other asset events. 

Also, Sabrina Vega is a person again. So that will be interesting.