LIVE BLOG: USAG Nationals Team Finals with No. 1 LU, No. 2 UIC, No. 3 UB and No. 5 AFA

Buckle your seat belts, because tonight is going to be a wild ride. Any team is capable of winning the USAG National Championships, and I’ll tell you why.

Lindenwood and UIC, the top two seeded teams heading into this weekend, tied both times they faced-off during the regular season. This is absolutely insane in the sport of gymnastics and shows how neck-and-neck they are.

However, BOTH teams experienced upsets at yesterday’s Semifinal. In the first meet, No. 5 AFA dominated the field for a first-place finish, pulling ahead of No. 1 Lindenwood by less than a tenth. And in the second Semifinal, Bridgeport, the No. 3 ranked team, ALSO overtook NO. 2 UIC by less than a tenth.

I can’t stress this enough: tonight is anyone’s meet. The only factors you should really take into account are (1) Bridgeport has home advantage and (2) it’s UIC’s last meet ever as a team and so it’s going to be an emotional one for them (and literally everyone). Head space is often what determines outcomes during the post season.

Suggested items for tonight’s competition: tissues, a punching bag, snacks, a meditation guide, your therapist, a shoulder to cry on.

Here’s the link to the free live stream.

Rotation 1: AFA vault, UIC bars, UB beam and LU floor

Cahill (UB): So far so good, everything really solid. Arial to tuck full dismount STUCK! 9.800!

Stevenson (AFA): Good open tuck full. 9.700.

Tomassini (UIC): Looks like she took an extra swing to start? A little short on toe-front open half. 9.075

Franklin (LU): Looking super dynamic in lead-off spot, good double tuck to close. 9.850!

Javinett (UB): Good flight, energy looking good, switch to tuck, no bobbles so far. A little uneasy on jumps, hop on 1.5 dismount.

Colwell (LU): Amazing double pike to open. Huge front full front pike second pass. Wow. What an amazing routine.

Baddely (UIC): Sky high tkatchev. 9.775.

Salamone (AFA): BEAUTIFUL Yfull! Gonna be a huge score. 9.825!

Bardes (AFA): Nice tuck full, 9.700.

Alicke (UIC): What a great routine. Wow. Hugging coach for a long time, looks emotional. 9.800.

Fall on beam for Kistner. 9.100.

Baze (LU): She’s selllllling!! Love her energy on this event. Every pass hit so far.

Northern (UIC): Huge routine, almost stuck double lay dismount. Gonna score high. 9.825. All UIC girls getting long hugs from Mary. :'(

Doran (UB): Looking good despite teammates’ fall, pulls through for a good routine, hop on dismount. 9.725.

Alexander (LU): Really nice routine except a tid bit underrotated on second pass, ends with a nice double pike. 9.775.

Roland (UB): Huge series, UB is coming back from that fall it seems. Everything super solid. RO double full just a step back on the dismount. 9.775.

Reimers (UB): Huge series, little loose on legs but no question on landing. Man she is just on. Every skill locked and loaded. STUCK double full dismount. ONE JUDGE FLASHED A 10.0, but it’s a 9.900!

Henry (LU): Little weirdness on landing on first pass. MIssed second pass, but last pass great 1.5 punch lay. 9.750.

Leman (LU): Sat down front double full opening pass, oh no. Came back to finish out the routine strong, though.

AFTER ONE: LU 49.025, UIC 49.000, UB 48.85, AFA 48.825.

Okay, it’s tight.. as expected. I caught falls from both UB and LU, but they didn’t count which is good. Everyone looking pretty good otherwise, and one 10.0 has been flashed after rotation one!

Rotation 2: LU vault, AFA bars, UIC beam and UB floor

Tereshko (UB): Perfect double pike to open, nice jumps, STUCK double tuck second pass. Gorgeous last pass to finish, what a lead off! 9.750.

Baze (LU): Tuck chenko full and she nails the landing.

Reed (AFA): Looks like she had a break, had to take an extra swing or something? Judges had to confer, 9.05.

Henry (LU):

Maciel (UIC): Big balance check, but came back with a stuck piked gainer dismount.

Turon (LU): Yarabian and it looked stuck!!!

Kistner (UB): Coming back off a fall on beam… Gorgeous first pass, she’s looking great. RO 1.5 lay, nice! Stuck last pass too! She came BACK! 9.825.

Kirpatrick (AFA): WOW. What a routine! And it’s a stuck dismount too! Gonna score high. 9.875.

Squillo (UIC): I missed the routine but she was AMPED. 9.750.

Roland (UB): Little step thing on opening double back. Love her music so much. Last pass BOOM! Great double tuck to end.

Davis with a great routine and an almost stick on bars.

Mahoney (UIC): Big balance check on flight series. Wait.. did she redo her flight series? Did another bhs loso and fell unfortunately. 9.100.

Murphy (AFA): I missed it but for what it’s worth, my dad was freaking out about it and said it was amazing. So. And it’s a 9.775.

Aycock (UB): Great front double full to open, only caught second pass after that which was very solid, crowd is clapping along..

Salamone (AFA): Huge piked geinger, finishes with a STUCK full-in.

Sheremeta (UIC): She’s ON so far. Front aerial BOOM! Wow.. the best piked front toss I’ve ever seen? Especially coming off a fall on that last night. Great routine! 9.800!

Gwinn (UB): Gigantic double pike to start, HUGE double tuck second pass! Loving her choreo. Finishes with such a strong front full front lay. Great routine.

Baddely (UIC): THAT RING JUMP THO. Just caught a huge balance check tho.. Finishes with a stuck RO 1.5! Way to come back. Still a 9.825!

Reimers (UB): HUGE FULL-IN TO OPEN! Ms. Reimers is selling thiiiiis wow! Jumps beautiful as always, great second pass… Finishes with a gorgeous double pike. 9.90!

Northern (UIC): Great side aerial, everything looking hit. RO 1.5 with a hop on the landing. 9.675.

AFTER TWO: UB 97.975, AFA 97.950, LU 97.800 and UIC 97.750

Wow. It’s so tight. This is insane, I’m loving every minute of it. Everyone’s bringing their A-game tonight.

Rotation 3: UB vault, LU bars, AFA beam and UIC floor.

Reimers (UB): Yfull big step back.

Baker (UIC): Good double pike to open, nice 1.5 to pike second pass. Ends with a bit of an ankle-crunching double tuck. 9.675.

Alexander (LU):  Big piked jaeger to bail, a little off though may have hit her feet. 9.800, so i guess not.

Futch (UB): Good YFull, a little low on block.

Gwinn (UB): Great Yfull.

Alicke (UIC): Beautiful leap series to start, wow, 2.5 to tuck beautiful, rudi super solid on second pass.

Davis (AFA): Fall on front aerial.

Colwell (LU): With a GORGEOUS routine. STUCK dismount. 9.8250.

Roland (UB): with a STUCK chenko full!!! 9.900. It was beautiful.

A few short handstands and hop on the dismount for Henry (LU), but overall great routine.

Albrecht (UIC): Super solid so far, passes all hit. Ends with a great double tuck.

Murphy (AFA): Fall on flight series. Going to have to count a fall for AFA.

Mitchell (LU): Giant straddle jaegar, overshoot to hand, almost stuck double lay. Guy in front of me goes “they playing no games on the bars.”

Baddeley (UIC): Great double pike, she gets such nice amplitude! Ends with a huge double tuck. Long hug from Mary. 9.850.

Stapleton (AFA): Just caught another bit balance check on beam. 9.775.

Sheremeta (UIC): Front double full a bit jittery on landing, love her 1.5 punch front aerial. Ends with a gorgeous rudi straddle jump. 9.900!

Stevenson (AFA): HUGE front tuck mount. I’m living. Oh no oh no. Another fall.

Northern (UIC): She’s killing this routine. So much power from the start. Every pass dynamic and she’s having fun with choreo. Ends with a great double tuck. 9.925! I think that’s a high score for today?!

Luers (AFA): She’s coming back strong for AFA. Nice routine to a stuck gainer full dismount. 9.875!

AFTER THREE: UIC 147.025, UB 146.925, LU 146.875 and AFA 145.850

So unless anything completely insane happens, AFA is out after counting what I think ended up being two falls on beam. UIC, UB and LU are neck-in-freaking-neck right now. Who will dominate this last event??

Rotation 3: UIC vault, UB bars, LU beam and AFA floor

Roland (UB): Feet may have hit on overshoot. Stuck dismount!!!

Alexander with a gorgeous routine on beam. STUCK dismount. 9.975!!!!!!!!!

Nowak (UIC): Solid Yfull! 9.775.

Powell-Brown (UB): Great routine to a stuck double tuck dismount. 9.800.

Bailey (LU): Man, she is on.

Albrecht (UIC): Good Yhalf. 9.775.

Futch (UB): HUGE piked geinger, good overshoot, but a little close on the toeshoot.. STUCK double tuck! These landings!

Mahoney (UIC): Yhalf big hop.

Aycock (UB): That was a huge routine until a little off on blind full and step on landing.

Colwell (LU): STUCK DISMOUNT! 9.900!

Everyone is fighting, you can feel it!!!

Baddely (UIC): Yfull a little crunched and a step.

LOVELY routine for Doran (UB) to an almost stick!

Franklin (LU): Huge series, stuck. Side aerial, stuck. beat to split 3/4, stuck. Piked gainer, FREAKING stuck! ONE JUDGE FLASHED 10.0, other a 9.85. 9.925. Guys LU has this.

9.800 for Tereshko (UB) I believe.

Henry (LU): A little off on side aerial, otherwise great routine. RO 1.5 STUCK! 9.875.

Milliet (LU): Oh no, a little shaky on front aerial series, I’d be surprised if they counted that connection. Gorgeous second front aerial. She’s showing this off. Love the attitude turn, STUCK gainer front full dismount. 9.675.

Davis (AFA): Sorry I slacked on AFA’s floor! She’s bringing the power and drama to this routine. All eyes on Davis! Tumbling has all been on point, ends with a HUGE double tuck!


Final score: LU 196.375, 196.025, UB 195.925 and AFA 194.575

Live blog by Katie Norris

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