Seven gymnasts have scored at least one perfect 10.0 so far this season. Check out their flawless routines, as well as some of our honorable mentions (deductions, wya?).
Maggie Nichols, Oklahoma (Week One)
A perfect 10.0 on her first vault of the season, are we even surprised? Maggie Nichols is perhaps the most successful NCAA gymnast of all time, becoming the first to ever score a “Gym Slam” (10.0 on each event) not once but TWICE in her career. And she’s only competed two full seasons of college gymnastics. We’re actually surprised this is the only 10.0 she’s earned, but that isn’t to say she’s underperforming. Nichols has come dangerously close to hitting perfection on both beam and bars—nailing multiple 9.975s on each so far, including four on beam.
Katelyn Ohashi, UCLA (Weeks Two, Six and Seven)
There’s a reason Katelyn Ohashi’s floor routine went viral this year, and it’s not just because it’s a perfect 10.0 (although that certainly helps). When she steps on the floor, she puts on a show. Where most routines are designed to fit the gymnast, hers is tailored to fit her audience. She caters to the viewing experience, performing a routine that’s effusive, relatable and contagiously fun.
This isn’t the only reason her routine stands out. When it comes to scoring, usually less is more in that the more skills you perform, the higher the likelihood the judges will find a deduction. This can lead to a tiresome uniformity in NCAA gymnastics, with athletes choosing to compete the same “safe” and easy-to-control skills over and over again.
But Ohashi breaks through the noise with this routine. From her opening split-leg double lay to her closing switch split drop, her routine is jam-packed with skills and combinations that are so unique they deserve an “Ohashi” trademark. Come on. Who thinks of this stuff? This beautifully curated gem of a routine has her ranked No. 1 nationally on the floor exercise.
Kyla Ross, UCLA
Kyla Ross is absolutely killing the NCAA game this year. Normally Nichols leads the pack when it comes to earning perfect 10.0s, but 2019 seems to be the year of Kyla Ross. She’s earned more perfect scores than any other competitor, and most notably two of Ross’ 10.0s have been earned on vault—an event she isn’t typically known for. It’s also her first year competing a Yurchenko one and a half, making this an even more impressive feat. All she needs is a perfect score on floor to complete the Gym Slam.
Bars (Week Two and Five)
Ross is no stranger to 10.0s on bars. Those lines, handstands and sticks are absolutely textbook. The former Olympic gold-medalist now has five career perfect scores on the event.
Vault (Week Six and Seven)
While Ross may have struggled a bit with this new vault in January, she’s certainly not struggling now, earning back-to-back 10.0s the past two weeks. Kudos to Ross for stepping it up this season and leading the No. 2-ranked Bruins toward perhaps another championship win.
Madison Kocian, UCLA (Week Four)
Kocian is another former Olympic and world gold medalist who slays on bars. This is her third career perfect 10.0, all of which were earned on bars. But this isn’t surprising, as Kocian was a bar specialist for the U.S. in 2016, contributing to the team’s first place finish in Rio. She also earned herself a silver medal on bars that same Olympics.
Nicole Lehrmann, Oklahoma (Week Five)
It’s one thing to be flawless. It’s something entirely different when you can perform a routine that looks like Nicole Lehrmann’s. The beauty of her routine lies in her extension. From her over-extended arms to her sharp toe point, Lehrmann hits each skill with precision and grace. She makes her routine look effortless from start to finish, ending with one of the prettiest half-in half-out dismounts we’ve ever seen. Plus, in a meet that was full of questionable judging, Lehrmann’s perfect mark stands up.
Lynnzee Brown, Denver (Week Six)
— Denver Gymnastics (@DU_Gymnastics) February 11, 2019
I’m not going to lie, my jaw dropped after watching Brown stick her final pass. This is what we’d call an objective perfect 10.0; there simply are no deductions. There are certain teams (I’m not going to name names *UCLA*) that the judges seem to favor when it comes to handing out 10.0s, so it’s really refreshing to see a lesser-known gymnast from Denver earn a perfect score so early in the season. While Brown may not have been on my radar before, she certainly is now. Let’s see if she’s able to repeat her performance on this event in the weeks to come.
Olivia Trautman, Oklahoma (Week Seven)
It was about time we saw Trautman reach perfection on floor. The freshman, who also happens to be ranked No. 2 in the country on the event, has taken NCAA gymnastics by storm, flirting with a 10.0 on this event (and others) multiple times already this season. Trautman gets extraordinary amplitude on each pass, from her opening double lay to her closing double tuck, which she kicks out of—a style only the most powerful gymnasts are able to execute.
Sarah Finnegan, LSU (9.950)
Since a Yurchenko full starts at a 9.950, this is a perfect vault. Finnegan gets so much air time that she’s actually able to flair out before landing, which adds a bit of personality to the full. Finnegan is currently ranked sixth in the all around and has the potential to reach perfection on any of the four events.
Trinity Thomas, Florida (9.975)
Freshmen are making waves this year, and Thomas is at the helm. She’s come close to perfect 10s on both floor and bars with 9.975s and is currently ranked third and fourth in the nation on these events, respectively. A 10.0 is inevitable at this point.
Maddie Karr, Denver (9.975)
Y’all, Maddie Karr is performing some of the cleanest NCAA gymnastics out there. Check out her 9.975 bar routine from week five. Her routine is uniquely composed, starting with a hecht mount that leads into a Gienger + overshoot connection. You don’t see many high-level NCAA gymnasts performing her routine, and certainly not as well as she does it. She’s currently ranked fourth in the nation on this event and was even training a hop full over the summer. New addition in 2020?
Maggie Nichols, Oklahoma (9.975)
For Nichols to go a whole season without a 10 on bars or beam is highly unlikely. Her routine is gorgeous, her releases exceed all expectations on amplitude and her dismounts are almost always stuck.
Article by Kate Norris
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