The Dismount: Regionals

By Christina Marmet, Elizabeth Grimsley and Caroline Medley


It was a somewhat straightforward day of regional competition with only a bit of drama as Nebraska and Washington overcame their No. 3-seed and booked their trips to nationals. Aside from finding out which teams and individuals will make their way to St. Louis, we also now know which semifinals will feature which teams. The afternoon session will include Oklahoma, Washington, Utah, Denver, UCLA and Oregon State while the evening session will have Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Michigan, LSU and Nebraska.

Are you playing the 2017 NCAA Gym Bracket Challenge? Check up on how you’re doing here.

Champaign Regional

Full Results | UCLA: 196.800 | Oregon State: 196.150 | Iowa: 196.050 | Illinois: 195.825 | Ohio State: 195.700 | EMU: 195.400
VT: Dessaints 9.925 | UB: Kocian 9.950 | BB: Metcalf, Kaji 9.950 | FX: Cipra, Kocian, McMillan 9.875 | AA: McMillan 39.400
Nationals Qualifiers: UCLA, Oregon State, Angel Metcalf (AA, Iowa), Alexis Mattern (AA, Ohio State), Clair Kaji (BB, Iowa)

For a recap, see Ashley Wijangco’s account of the competition.


Fayetteville Regional

Full Results | Utah: 197.150 | DU: 197.050 | AU: 196.600 | Ark: 196.600 | Cal: 196.300 | CMU: 195.675
VT: Speed, Fielitz, Skinner, Pedrick 9.900 | UB: Cerio, Chesnok 9.925 | BB: Palomares, Clements, McNatt, Karr 9.900 | FX: Skinner 9.950 | AA: Skinner 39.525
Nationals Qualifiers: Utah, Denver, Becker (AA, AU), Yamzon (AA, Arkansas), Speed (VT, Arkansas), Pedrick (VT, CMU), Cerio (UB, AU), Palomares (BB, Cal), Clements (BB, CMU)
​The Fayetteville regional was shaping up to be an exciting one, but we certainly didn’t expect it to be so close throughout the entire competition. Utah and Denver qualified to nationals ahead of Auburn, Arkansas, California and Central Michigan, but the final results certainly looked uncertain during most of the meet. The Pioneers put out one of their best performances of the season and were right on Utah’s heels the entire night, even leading at the halfway point. This is only the fourth time in school history that Denver qualified to nationals, and the first since 2008. The Utes had a bit of an underwhelming meet for their standards, especially during the first two rotations.  They probably also had a bit to worry about seeing how everybody else was on top of their game. The Utes did come back strong on floor and vault, and ended up narrowly winning the meet after going 24 for 24. They had to deal with the loss of Kari Lee from the all around as she tweaked her ankle in practice and was only able to compete bars here. Filling in for her on beam and making her debut there was Shannon McNatt, who casually scored the highest score of the rotation and ended up winning the event (9.900).Pressing the Utes and the Pioneers all night were Auburn and Arkansas, and they ended up being tied for third with a 196.600. The Tigers started off the meet lights out on bars and scored their season high on the event, which ended up also being the highest bars total of the night. They hit 24 for 24 routines on their way to scoring their season high team score, peaking at just about the right time after a season of ups and downs, and inconsistencies. Auburn will get to send two individuals to St. Louis: Katie Becker in the all around and Sam Cerio on the uneven bars. Also peaking at the right time was the host team Arkansas that completely shattered everybody’s expectations and scored its season high as well. After a season filled with adversity, it was heartwarming and exciting to see the Razorbacks come out so strong in front of their

home crowd and to put up a complete performance after the disappointment from the SEC Championship to close out their season. Arkansas will send two individuals to nationals too, with Braie Speed for vault and Jessica Yamzon for the all around. California recorded its highest regional score ever despite finishing fifth here, proving once again the competitiveness of this meet. Despite its variety of 10.0 vaults, the Bears fell behind on that event and were unable to go above the 49 mark. They closed out the competition strong on beam, but it was not enough to catch up with Auburn and Arkansas. Desiree Palomares became Cal’s first ever regional beam champion and will represent Cal in St. Louis. Finally, Central Michigan placed sixth with a 195.675 but will send two individuals to nationals. Katy Clements won a share of the balance beam title, while Denelle Pedrick shared the vault title with a 9.900 after casually throwing a double full for the first time in competition. Like one does at regionals. Consequently, each of the non qualified teams will be sending a few individuals to nationals, a feat quite hard to achieve and rarely seen, if ever.

Gainesville Regional

Full Results | UF: 197.125 | UGA: 196.775 | Mizzou: 196.100 | PSU: 195.325 | UNC: 194.425 | UNH: 194.175
VT: Snead, Slocum 9.95 | UB: McMurtry 9.95 | BB: McMurtry, Broussard 9.9 | FX: McMurtry, Boren, Baker 9.95 | AA: McMurtry 39.675
Nationals Qualifiers: Florida, Georgia, Sabrina Garcia (AA, PSU), Briannah Tsang (AA, PSU)
Despite early mistakes from the Gators, the Gainesville regional turned out much like many expected. Starting off slow on bars, Florida had to count a 9.425 from Alicia Boren, where she arched over a handstand and had to re-kip, after a devastating fall from Rachel Gowey on her release. However, the team came back strong on beam, culminating in a title-winning 9.9 from Alex McMurtry. At the halfway point, Missouri was actually right on Florida’s heels, only a tenth behind. However, the Gators came into floor rested and raring to go, scoring three back-to-back-to-back 9.925s for a big 49.45 event total. They continued building from there, going into vault and nailing their landings for four scores of 9.9 or higher. Missouri started off on a bye, but came to play on floor, building their scores throughout the rotation to culminate in a 9.875 from anchor Kennedi Harris. Vault was a little more hesitant, having to count a 9.75 from Madeleine Huber, which definitely lost them some ground against Florida. After all arounder Aspen Tucker fell on both bars and beam, it was clear that there wasn’t enough gas left in the tank for Missouri to finish it out. Counting a 9.7 and two 9.75s on beam meant that the Tigers’

hopes of extending their season were dashed. Even beam rockstar Britney Ward came up just shy of an event title, scoring a 9.875 rather than the 9.9 she needed to qualify as an individual. Despite not qualifying, though, Missouri should be proud of its performance. Its 196.1 is actually the second-highest regional score in its program history!

While the Gators and the Tigers went back and forth in the first half of the meet, Georgia just did its own thing. With the advantage of going in Olympic order, the Gymdogs scored their highest road vault total of the season, a 49.325. Sydney Snead essentially stuck her Yurchenko 1.5 to set the bar high for any hopeful vault qualifiers at a 9.95. After their bye, the Dogs were a little more tight, especially after a fall from Lauren Johnson. However, in her one event of the night, freshman Rachel Dickson came back to score a 9.9, the team’s highest score on the event. Beam started out well, but they had to count a few lower scores in the first half of the rotation because Vivi Babalis scored just a 9.625, because she had a bobble after her front aerial and had to repeat it to get credit for her series. Floor bounced back though, with the Gymdogs able to count all scores over 9.8. Penn State had a triumphant night after a rollercoaster season, qualifying both Sabrina Garcia and Briannah Tsang to nationals as all arounders. While the Lions made mistakes on each event, the gymnasts had each other’s backs, as they were able to avoid counting any falls all night. North Carolina had a phenomenal night, but in their final rotation, their best hope of having a representative at nationals was dashed as Morgan Lane fell on her beam series. Up to that point, she had a great night, scoring a team-high 9.85 on floor and totally nailing her Yurchenko full-on back pike on vault. New Hampshire had quite a rollercoaster of a night, with different gymnasts having misses just when they started to build some momentum. They still managed not to count any falls, and should definitely be proud to have been at regionals. Also worth noting was Chelsea Knight of North Carolina State, who had a stellar night and benefited from rotating with Florida, coming just one tenth shy of qualifying to nationals!

Lincoln Regional

Full Results | LSU: 197.450 | Nebraska: 196.625 | Boise State: 196.150 | Minnesota: 195.575 | Arizona: 195.500 | Iowa State: 195.250
VT: Edney 9.925 | UB: Finnegan 9.925 | BB: Breen 9.950 | FX: Gnat 9.950 | AA: Finnegan 39.475
Nationals Qualifiers: LSU, Nebraska, Haylee Young (AA, Iowa State), Shani Remme (AA, Boise State)
It was a regional of highs and lows as Nebraska joyously celebrated its berth to nationals while Boise State left disappointed after a stellar, record-breaking season. The Broncos didn’t really have one moment where things slipped away. It was more that the Huskers were just better that day—posting higher totals on vault and beam to ultimately take the second qualifying spot. Down two tenths heading into the last rotation, Boise State still had a chance but didn’t do quite enough on floor to make up the deficit as had 9.9+ scores on beam to seal the deal. Boise State will still have a representative at nationals, though, as Shani Remme claimed the second individual all around qualifying spot.LSU pretty much breezed through its competition, posting the second-highest score of the weekend and easily advancing to nationals with a mid-197. However, it didn’t look especially solid on all four events as Sydney Ewing fell on beam and Kennedi Edney had just a 9.650 on the event as well. The remaining events, though, were all above 49.350, making up for the off event. Minnesota also had a strong showing despite finishing fourth. But it was the fact that the Gophers finished fourth that was impressive. Coming in having barely made regionals and sitting as the No. 36 and final

team, the team outperformed its ranking, beating two other teams in Lincoln. Arizona also wrapped up its up-and-down season with a strong finish and Iowa State extended its season through the likes of individual all around qualifier Haylee Young who will compete in St. Louis on all four events.

Morgantown Regional

Full Results | UM: 197.350 | Alabama: 196.625 | WVU: 196.325 | SUU: 195.675 | GW: 195.625 | KSU: 194.375
VT: Raineri, McLean, Zaziski 9.875 | UB: Zaziski 9.950 | BB: Artz 9.925 | FX: Sims 9.950 | AA: Zaziski 39.575
Nationals Qualifiers: Michigan, Alabama, Zaakira Muhammad (AA, WVU), Cami Drouin-Allaire (AA, GW), Chelsea Raineri (VT, GW)
What was supposed to be a straightforward regional for Alabama and Michigan got a bit dramatic for the Crimson Tide at the end of the competition as a mediocre vault rotation kept the team total in the mid-196 range. That set up West Virginia and Southern Utah with a chance to upset the No. 6-team in the country and take a trip to nationals. The Thunderbirds needed a feasible, but season high of 49.325 on beam to match Alabama while the Mountaineers needed a less-doable 49.600+ to match. However, two beam falls and only two scores at 9.8 or above spelled the end of the road for Southern Utah. But West Virginia did a better job on its task, having its best bar rotation all season by over a tenth, including two scores at 9.9 or better and five above 9.8. But in the end it wasn’t enough and Alabama was safe and moving on to St. Louis despite a rocky beam rotation and off vault lineup.Michigan, transversely, had a great competition, refusing to let what happened last season happen again. The Wolverines nailed every routine, not scoring below 9.7 on any of them and hitting the third-highest score of the day out of any regional. George Washington also had a solid night despite finishing fourth. The Colonials scored its highest postseason total in program history, advanced its first two-time qualifier to nationals and had its first-ever regional champion on an event as Chelsea Raineri will move on to vault in St. Louis and Cami Drouin-

Allaire will make her second trip to NCAAs as an all arounder. But it wasn’t an easy road for CDA. The individual all around competition was tight in Morgantown. Division II and West Chester’s Majesta Valentine came within 0.050 of a nationals berth and Kent State’s Rachel Stypinski was only 0.125 away.

Seattle Regional

Full Results | OU: 198.075 | UW: 196.550 | UK: 196.200 | Stan: 195.575 | BYU: 195.025 | USU: 194.850
VT: Nichols, Jackson 9.950 | UB: Price 9.975 | BB: Capps, Nichols 9.975 | FX: Nichols 9.950 | AA: Nichols 39.750
Nationals Qualifiers: Oklahoma, Washington, Korth (AA, UK), Hyland (AA, UK),  Price (UB, Stanford)
One of the most anticipated regionals of the weekend saw Oklahoma and Washington come out victorious, with a heated battle for that coveted second spot between the Huskies and the Wildcats. The Sooners cruised through this meet as expected, and they scored the highest score across all regionals with a 198.075. We finally saw the return of Maggie Nichols to the all-around who casually scored a 39.750, and it was like she never left. The Huskies and the Wildcats battled it out for the second spot, and we already knew it would be a historical feat for either teams, but also heartbreaking for us gym fans. Both teams were neck and neck throughout, but the Wildcats were not able to take the big lead they would have needed on uneven bars (one of their best events) to safely stay ahead of the Huskies. The final rotation also ended up being costly for Kentucky on floor, where it had to deal with a few bouncy landings while Washington was on beam, its best event. Beam leadoff Malory Rose also had a very Strug-esque moment where she essentially stuck her landing on one foot, fighting through an injury, and thankfully so since her score ended up counting after a fall from Janik later in the

lineup. This is the first time since 1998 that the Huskies will be at nationals, and this feat is even more impressive as it is Elise Ray’s first year as a head coach. The Wildcats were certainly disappointed as they came so close, but this team is young and the future is bright for it after this record-breaking season. Kentucky will still send two all-arounders to St. Louis in Mollie Korth and Alex Hyland.Stanford was coming in as the big underdog here with the potential to cause quite the upset, but unfortunately the Cardinal came up short. It did play with our hearts once again with Ebee Price scheduled to compete in the all-around, but actually, not really. Fortunately, Price won the uneven bars and qualified to nationals on that event, so we at least avoided quite the gymternet implosion there. Starting on beam, the Cardinal had troubles containing its nerves and had a fall right from the get go. From then on and with both Kentucky and Washington putting out their best performances, it became near impossible for Stanford to catch up. It did end the meet strong on bars with its highest rotation score of 49.1000, but it just couldn’t keep up with the other two. Furthermore, BYU had another solid performance to close out its season, and the Cougars scored their highest regional score in 12 years. Finally, the fourth-seed Aggies had a bit of a rough showing and were sadly not able to maintain their momentum from the conference championships where they went above a 196. As for individuals, it was hard for all to compete with the athletes present with their teams and to basically match Nichols’ score, but Lauren Rice (Sac State) won the love of the crowd with her unique gymnastics and fun personality, as we saw the Washington fans essentially lose their minds over her performances.

NCGA DIII Championships

Full Results: Day 1, Day 2 | UW-W 191.000 | UW-LC 188.300 | Brockport: 186.800 | Ursinus: 186.750 | UW-S 186.475 | Springfield: 184.775
VT: O’Donnell 9.725 | UB: Ostrovsky 9.675 | BB: Tkaczuk 9.775 | FX: Jackson 9.850 | AA: O’Donnell 38.225Want to receive the latest collegiate gymnastics news in your inbox? Sign up for the NCAA Gym NewsLetter here.

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