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Competition Reports

Written by dwight normile    Sunday, 19 August 2018 06:39    PDF Print
Mikulak Wins Fifth National Title
(1 vote, average 5.00 out of 5)

Sam Mikulak (USOTC) won his fifth U.S. Championships, tying Blaine Wilson with the most titles. Frank Cumiskey and George Wheeler also won five national titles. The event was held at the TD Garden Arena in Boston, August 16-19.

Mikulak avoided the falls he had on day one (pommel horse and high bar) and hit all six routines. He also had three stuck landings: tucked double-double off rings; tucked barani-out off parallel bars; double-twisting double layout off high bar.

"This is the favorite U.S. championships I've won so far," said Mikulak, who won floor exercise, parallel bars and high bar. Later he proclaimed, "It's time for me to go and get what I want."

Perhaps a sixth national title?

Yul Moldauer (Oklahoma) climbed from sixth on Thursday to second place. He fell on floor during a flair sequence but hit a clean pommels set. On rings he performed a Yamawaki to Jonasson and he stuck his tucked double-double. He might have been underscored on parallel bars, and he performed a clean high bar set but dismounted with a full-twisting double layout instead of the triple version on day one.

"Obviously on Thursday I wasn't prepared enough," he said. "I knew if I could start well (on Saturday), just keep that flowing and keep the energy high. Today was fun. There were more people here, the guys were good and I was with my teammates."

Allen Bower (Oklahoma) finished third, the same rank he held on Thursday. He's definitely known for his consistency.

"I just try to stay within myself," he said. "I am pleased with [the result] but I know I can do better."

Alec Yoder (Ohio State) finished fifth and he won pommel horse, where he performs a full kehre and full stockli. Considering that the men's program is often weak on that event, perhaps he could be added to the 2018 Worlds team. Those worlds are breaking the tradition of a six-member team and lowering it to five. Eight gymnasts will go to a training camp at the USOTC to select the team.

Akash Modi (Stanford) had a couple of mishaps, the biggest being a fall on a Bhavsar on his best event, parallel bars, and on high bar he went the wrong way on a Takemoto. After placing second on Thursday, he dropped to sixth on Saturday.

For full results of the U.S. Championships, click here.

Read the full story in the 2018 September issue of International Gymnast. To subscribe to the print and/or digital edition or to order back issues of International Gymnast, click here.

Written by dwight normile    Saturday, 18 August 2018 06:03    PDF Print
Biles, Wong Lead The Field At USAs In Boston
(2 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

Simone Biles took the early lead at the U.S. Championships in Boston, August 16-19.

Biles, who is coached by Laurent and Cecile Landi at World Champions Center, led the scoring on all four events but had two .30 deductions on floor exercise. On her third pass she performed the Biles (double layout-half) but her stag jump landed out of bounds. Her dismount, a tucked double-double, also landed out of bounds. Her mount was a double-twisting double layout and her second pass was a layout front-full through to a tucked full-in, which she made look easy.

Biles received a good luck from her former coach, Aimee Boorman.

"I feel like I enjoyed championships a lot more than classics," Biles said. "Because I felt at classics I was easing back into everything and feeling the surroundings and getting used to competing again…I thought I would be completely drained (after day one), but I think I'll be OK for day two."

Second to Biles, Morgan Hurd (First State Gymnastics) also went four for four.

"I'd like to clean up landings and piking on vault, but otherwise I'm really happy with my performance," Hurd said. "I'm most proud of how calm I was the entire meet. The nerves are there but the nerves are what keep you going."

Riley McCusker finished third and hit all four events. On floor exercise she opened with a clean double layout and displayed beautiful dance, which is a trademark for many of Maggie Haney’s gymnasts at MG Elite.

"I did try ballet when I was little for about two years, and it definitely helped me, especially with this floor routine," said McCusker, whose coach choreographed her routine.

Defending champion Ragan Smith (Texas Dreams) didn't fall off uneven bars but she had a few intermediate swings. She did reasonably well on beam, with a few wobbles, but put her hands down on her double pike dismount. She finished in a tie for ninth with Shania Adams.

Leanne Wong (GAGE) led after the first day in the junior division.

For complete results, click here.

Written by John Crumlish    Friday, 10 August 2018 07:24    PDF Print
"We Can Do It," Says Turkey's Colak On Tokyo 2020
(2 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

The Turkish men’s fifth-place finish in qualifications at the European Championships in Glasgow, Scotland, on Thursday may have surprised some rivals and fans, but team veteran Ibrahim Colak told IG that Turkey is on track for making it as a team to the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

“We are good individual gymnasts, but we want team success,” said Colak, who won the gold on rings and the 2018 Mersin Challenge Cup in Mersin, Turkey, July 6-8. “We want to go to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games with a team. This is so hard, we know, but not impossible. We are the Turkish team and we can do it.”

Russia, Great Britain, Germany and Switzerland finished first through fourth, respectively, in qualifications in Glasgow. The top eight teams advanced to Saturday’s team final.

Following fifth-place Turkey, the other qualifiers for the team final are France, Spain and Italy.

Thursday’s qualifications also served to advance individual gymnasts to Sunday’s apparatus finals.

International Gymnast magazine’s coverage of male gymnasts who are competing at the 2018 European championships in Glasgow includes:

Russia’s David Belyavsky on cover collage (September 2017)

"European Ruler" - interview with Belyavsky (July/August 2013)

“Genuine Germans” - profile on Germany’s Nils Dunkel (June 2017)

“They’re Just Normal People” - short profile on Great Britain’s Joe Fraser (June 2017)

“There are No Limits” - profile on Cyprus’s Marios Georgiou (June 2017)

“I Can’t Ask for Much More” - profile on Great Britain’s James Hall (June 2017)

“Rok, Solid” - profile on Slovenia’s Rok Klavora (November 2009)

"Serious Contender" - profile on Russia’s Nikolai Kuksenkov (March 2011)

“Lifting Lithuania” - profile on Lithuania’s Tomas Kuzmickas (January/February 2018)

"Crossing the Border" - interview with Belarus’s Andrey Likhovitsky (December 2013)

To subscribe to the print and/or digital edition or to order back issues of International Gymnast magazine, click here.

Written by John Crumlish    Tuesday, 29 May 2018 07:09    PDF Print
Black, Cournoyer Win Canadian Titles
(2 votes, average 3.00 out of 5)

Ellie Black won her fifth senior women’s all-around title and Rene Cournoyer earned his first senior men’s all-around title at the Canadian championships that took place May 22-27 in Waterloo, Ont.

Black, the 2017 world all-around silver medalist, finished over five points ahead of the field with her two-day combined score of 111.607 points. Black placed first all-around at the 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2017 Canadian championships, and second all-around at the 2016 Canadian championships.

Isabela Onyshko, the 2016 winner, finished second (106.406), and 2017 bronze medalist Jade Chrobok finished third (105.647).

Cournoyer, whose previous best all-around finished was second in 2015, scored 83.10 for first place. Jackson Payne, the 2016 winner and 2017 silver medalist, was second (81.50), and Cory Paterson was third (78.70).

2018 Canadian Championships, Waterloo, Ontario, May 22-27.

Senior Women’s All-Around (two-day total): 1. Ellie Black 111.607; 2. Isabela Onyshko 106.406; 3. Jade Chrobok 105.647; 4. Brooklyn Moors 104.440; 5. Sophie Marois 104.238; 6. Victoria Kayen-Woo 103.646.

Senior Men’s All-Around: 1. Rene Cournoyer 83.10; 2. Jackson Payne 81.50; 3. Cory Paterson 78.70; 4. Samuel Zakutney 78.65; 5. Zachary Clay 78.20; 3. Darren Wong 78.05

International Gymnast magazine’s recent coverage of Canadian gymnasts includes:

“Canadian Grace” - Brooklyn Moors interview (December 2017)

2017 World Championships special issue, incl. Canadians (November 2017)

Ellie Black on cover collage, 2017 Worlds preview (September 2017)

“Canadian Candor” - Ellie Black and Zachary Clay interviews (July/August 2017)

“Canadian Pace-setter” - Ana Padurariu profile (December 2016)

“Canadian on a Roll” - Jade Chrobok profile (April 2016)

Chrobok, Meixi Semple on cover inset photo and featured in 2016 Nadia International coverage (March 2016)

To subscribe to the print and/or digital editions of International Gymnast magazine, or order back issues, click here.

Written by Admin    Sunday, 22 April 2018 07:20    PDF Print
Oklahoma Wins Its 12th NCAA Title
(3 votes, average 3.67 out of 5)


CHICAGO—Oklahoma hasn't lost a meet since it placed second at the 2014 NCAA Championships. The closest the Sooners came to losing this season was at Ohio State in Columbus, where they won, 413.650-412.700.

In a much closer than expected competition, Oklahoma prevailed over its rivals again, and a fired-up Minnesota squad took advantage of an Illinois group that faltered on high bar late in the competition.

For most of the evening, the atmosphere was electric. The crowd of 4,193 spectators were assembled in groups of team supporters, and the shouts of “We are Penn State!” and “Boomer, Sooner!” energized athletes, officials and fans alike.

Said NCAA representative John Bugner: “This is my third men's championship and it's by far the best one I’ve been to."

"This is the best experience ever," said Yul Moldauer of Oklahoma, who won the all-around title. "We’ve had, and I’ve had, success, but tonight is No. 1 for me."

Now Oklahoma has won four straight NCAA Championships to tie Penn State with the most at 12 titles. Illinois is next with 10.

The Sooners scored 414.858, and there was a close battle for the next two places. Minnesota finished second with 411.923, and Illinois placed third with 411.689.

Said Minnesota coach Mike Burns: "We had it going tonight. This is only the third time in Minnesota history that we finished in second; the first time was when Newt Loken was on the team (1941)."

Stanford scored 408.589 for fourth, Nebraska finished fifth with 403.589 and Penn State placed sixth with 401.991.

Yul Moldauer of Oklahoma grabbed the all-around crown with 87.298, and Minnesota freshman Shane Wiskus placed second with 83.064. Alec Yoder of Ohio State finished third with 82.631.

Nissen-Emery Award winner Sean Melton (Ohio State) and a rough all-around meet. He fell on his tucked double-double rings dismount and fell forward on his handspring-double front vault. He placed eighth with 81.498.

Read complete coverage of the men's and women's NCAA Championships in the May issue of International Gymnast.

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