Recruit Files: Leah Smith, Washington

Name: Leah Smith
Club: World Champions Centre
High School Graduation Year: 2021

NCAA Team: Washington
Commitment Announcement: Instagram
Social Handles: Twitter | Instagram (main) | Instagram (gymnastics)

Personal Bests 

Vault Uneven Bars Balance Beam Floor Exercise
9.800 9.675 9.550 9.850


Vault Uneven Bars Balance Beam Floor Exercise
2020 Metroplex Challenge 2020 Metroplex Challenge 2020 Metroplex Challenge 2020 Metroplex Challenge

About Leah

Smith is a 2019 J.O. nationals qualifier. There she tied for fifth place on vault and for seventh on beam (Junior E). In 2019 she won gold medals in the all around, vault and floor at the Texas state meet, and was crowned Region 3 champion in the all around, beam and floor. She scored career highs on bars and floor in 2020. Smith was previously committed to California.

What She Brings to Washington


  • Skill: Yurchenko full
  • Results: 2018 and 2019 Texas state champion
  • Margin of Improvement: Smith performs a gorgeous vault—her body position in the air, her amplitude and her ability to find the landing are impressive. Although the Yurchenko full has only a 9.950 start value in college, Smith has the potential to score over 9.9 consistently.
  • Impact on the Team: Smith will be expected to contribute to the lineup from the start. For form and elegance, she will be Geneva Thompson’s perfect replacement.

Uneven Bars

  • Skills: Maloney to bail to handstand, toe shoot, blind full to double tuck
  • Results: second place at the 2019 Texas state meet
  • Margin of Improvement: Smith’s form is very good. She could just work on her handstands a bit more.
  • Impact on the Team: Brenna Brooks is the only one of Washington’s 2020 top-five bar workers who will still be competing once Smith gets to college. She will be expected to make a difference.

Balance Beam

  • Skills: switch leap half to split jump to beat jump, BHS + LOSO, full turn, switch leap to back tuck somersault, double tuck dismount
  • Results: 2019 Region 3 champion
  • Margin of Improvement: Smith incurs in minor form deductions on her acrobatic series and on her splits. Her dismount is impressive.
  • Impact on the Team: Smith’s results are a bit shaky here, but Washington has a history of bringing out the best of its beam workers once they arrive in Seattle. Smith has plenty of potential here too.

Floor Exercise

  • Skills: full-twisting double pike, front pike to double tuck, double pike
  • Results: 2019 Region 3 champion
  • Margin of Improvement: Smith is an excellent floor worker. Her full-twisting double pike is one of the cleanest around. 
  • Impact on the Team: Smith is expected to make a difference from the start. She could anchor the lineup as a freshman. 

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Article by Talitha Ilacqua

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