Underrated Recruits in the Class of 2021 That Excel on Beam

Because our rating system was based on scores and video review for all four events, gymnasts with one standout event were often rated lower overall. Of course, teams that are weaker on one event, or are looking to fill a hole, will look to event specialists to solidify those lineups. Recruits who excel on a single event may not have ratings that reflect how valuable they can be to their teams, so we wanted to highlight some standouts.

Erika Penamante

College: Iowa
CGN Rating: ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Beam high scores: 9.775 (2018); 9.600 (2020)

Penamante, the 2018 Junior E level 10 national beam champion, not only has the strong dance and acro skills necessary for a solid college set, but she also already possesses collegiate beam presence, something that can be a struggle for many recruits. Anyone who can make a transverse split half look nice is a star in our book.

Mina Margraf

College: BYU
CGN Rating: ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Beam high scores: DNC (2020); 9.550 (2019)

Margraf has mastered the art of connections. Her unique skills, like the front toss and scale to gainer full, will play well at BYU. The Cougars are deep, but Margraf has all of the pieces to break through in that lineup.

Madeline Tyau

College: Southern Utah
CGN Rating: NR
Beam high scores: DNC (2020); 9.575 (2019)

If Tyau’s backhandspring, one-arm back handspring, layout step-out triple series doesn’t draw you in, her calm rhythm and presentation should. Beam presence is a challenging thing to develop, and Tyau will already be bringing it with her to Cedar City.

Eliza Millar

College: BYU
CGN Rating: NR
Beam high scores: 9.475 (2020); 9.350 (2019)

Innate steadiness is a hallmark of a lot of top NCAA beamers. Millar has it. She doesn’t hesitate or lose her center, and keeps connections moving fluidly. Those pieces will be important at BYU. Between her and classmate Margraf, keep an eye on the beam in Provo in January 2022.

Jana Vongsamphanh

College: Uncommitted
CGN Rating: NR
Beam high scores: DNC (2020); 9.550 (2019)

Vongsamphanh only has one level 10 year under her belt, but that isn’t stopping her from training huge skills, like a double pike dismount. Her level 9 set shows strong splits and a quick and confident tempo that will translate well to college. That stuck one and half dismount won’t hurt, either.

Article by Emily Minehart and Talitha Ilacqua

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