The Dismount: NCAA Regionals

Man, what a weekend! After three long days of competition and a number of exciting upsets heading into the regional final, the top eight teams in the country ultimately advanced to nationals. Read up on how it all went down, as well as who all the nationals qualifiers are, in this week’s Dismount.


Best Round One Coverage

Morgantown Regional

While we don’t know what Salt Lake City would have done, the Morgantown video coverage was by far the best of the day, with scores on the stream and not just commentators but competent ones. Is it really so hard to show the play-ins the same importance and respect as the other two rounds of regionals?

Most Innovative Fall

Adeline Kenlin, Iowa

Kenlin had a run in with the beam while mounting the apparatus. After an extended recollection period, Kenlin redid her routine with a solid performance. However, The judges gave her a zero since she took longer than 30 seconds to restart. 

Most Debonaire 

Sam Morreale, Northern Illinois

We couldn’t find a photo of him actually coaching at regionals, but needless to say he looked this classy. We talk a lot about women coaches’ style but sometimes miss their male counterparts. Morreale represented the Huskies in style—while Tara Kofmehl, Natalie Hamp and Zoie Schroeder absolutely shone as individuals, which is no easy feat.

Most Emotional Double Layout

Cami Topp, Illinois State

Cami Topp missed most of 2020 with an Achilles injury. She sprung back into lineups this year, qualified as an individual on floor and got to close out the entire Tuscaloosa round two session one competition. She started her routine with the debut of a new double layout and stuck it cold. Talk about a comeback.

The Highlights

Athens Regional

Nationals Qualifiers

  • Teams: Florida, Minnesota
  • All around: Lynnzee Brown (Denver)
  • Vault: Madi Dagen (Oregon State)
  • Bars: Hannah Demers (Central Michigan)
  • Beam: Morgan Tong (Central Michigan)
  • Floor: Emily Shepard (N.C. State)

The Big Storyline: Florida redeemed itself from its 2019 disappointment, easily coming in first in both its round two session and the final. Minnesota and Denver battled in both of their sessions. Despite being behind Denver going into the last rotation, the Gophers surged ahead to take the final qualifying spot. N.C. State put up a solid showing in its third-straight day of competition, and should be heading home from Athens very proud of its weekend.

Individual Insights: Emily Shepard was an instrumental part of the Wolfpack’s session two upset, and her 9.925 on floor was enough to earn a nationals berth. Despite falling well behind the field as a team in its session, Central Michigan had some stellar individual showings that landed the Chippewas bars and beam berths to Fort Worth. Madi Dagen, who has been sticking her Yurchenko 1.5 all year, lived up to expectations on that event. With three 10.0s across the weekend and some astronomical all around totals, Lynnzee Brown landed the all around spot.

Don’t Forget Us: Georgia put up a good fight in its session and sat briefly ahead of Denver. However, the Gymdogs had a lackluster beam rotation that kept them from the final. Illinois also had a shot in its regional, but a freak fall from Mia Takekawa on beam meant counting some lackluster scores, and N.C. State ran away with the opening. 

Records: All three of N.C. State’s team totals are new program records for regional competition. 

What’s Next: Minnesota and Florida will see each other again in the first semifinal in Fort Worth. They’ll battle California and Michigan for two finals spots.

Morgantown Regional

Nationals Qualifiers

  • Teams: Michigan, California
  • All around: Chae Campbell (UCLA)
  • Vault: Nia Dennis (UCLA)
  • Bars: Margzetta Frazier (UCLA)
  • Beam: Hannah Joyner (Rutgers)
  • Floor: Abbey Miner-Alder (BYU)

The Big Storyline: Michigan notched the second highest score of the weekend in cruising to the Morgantown regional title and securing itself a trip to nationals. California also put together a strong performance to outpace conference rival UCLA and snag the second nationals qualifying spot to continue its season. The Bruins finished their season strong with a season-high score to place third ahead of Ohio State, who placed fourth after upsetting BYU to advance to the regional final.

Individual Insights: Bars and floor both had tight individual battles to determine who advanced to nationals. Margzetta Frazier will join teammates Chae Campbell and Nia Dennis in Fort Worth after winning a three-way tie for the bars spot with a higher four-judge average. Campbell qualified in the all around and Dennis moves on, on vault. BYU’s Abbey Miner-Alder will represent the Cougars at nationals after winning a10-way tie for the floor spot where the tie was broken by higher NQS after Miner-Alder’s four-judge average and head judge score tied West Virginia’s Abbie Pierson. Rutgers got its third ever nationals qualifier in Hannah Joyner, who will compete on beam.

Don’t Forget Us: Ohio State used a season high in round two to advance to its first ever regional final while Towson’s round two total of 195.025 is a program record for highest postseason score.

Records: Michigan’s 198.100 in the regional final tied the program record set by the Wolverines earlier this season with their bars total of 49.725 breaking the school’s previous best on the event. California advances to nationals with the second best score in school history. This is the first time since 2006 that UCLA has not qualified a team to nationals.

What’s Next: California and Michigan will compete against Florida and Minnesota in the first of the NCAA semifinals.

Tuscaloosa Regional

Nationals Qualifiers

  • Teams: Oklahoma, Alabama
  • All around: Kennedy Hambrick (Arkansas)
  • Vault: Angelica Labat (Illinois State)
  • Bars: Maggie O’Hara (Arkansas)
  • Beam: Sydney Schaffer (Missouri)
  • Floor:  Hannah McCrary (Missouri)

The Big Storyline: Oklahoma had the highest score of the weekend in the regional final with a 198.175. The Sooners showcased consistency on all four events and were able to overcome any challenges they encountered. Anastasia Webb had a clutch performance on beam after teammate Karrie Thomas had a scary fall on her dismount. Alabama is the second team to advance to nationals. The Crimson Tide had a program best mark on bars, but was not able to overtake Oklahoma with uncontrolled landings on vault and floor for the regional win. Emily Gaskins competed all around in both competitions for the first time since 2017. Lexi Graber was only available for one vault in the final due to injury. The Tuscaloosa round two session one competition was one of the closest meets of the weekend. Arkansas, Iowa and Iowa State battled it out to make the regional final. However, Arkansas was able to edge out Iowa with a consistent competition on beam, floor and vault to finish out the meet and qualify for day two.  

Individual Insights: Angelica Labat of Illinois State was stellar on vault and took the regional title with a 9.950 on day two. Labat will compete for a national championship in Fort Worth in two weeks. Cameron Topp debuted her double layout on floor and had a fantastic performance.

Don’t Forget Us: Missouri peaked at the right time with eight solid rotations after struggling throughout the season. The team put up a fight and would have made round two very interesting if Auburn was competing. Iowa and Iowa State also had top season performances in their fight to make the regional final. 

Records: Missouri’s 197.350 in round two was the third best score in program history and a season high. Alabama achieved a program record on bars in round two with a 49.675. Iowa achieved its first 197 since 2004. Makarri Doggette and Luisa Blanco earned their first perfect 10s on bars and beam, respectively. 

Controversies: Adeline Kenlin ran into the beam as she was mounting. Kenlin was hunched over talking with her coach for an extended period to collect herself. The freshman restarted her routine with a solid performance and just a hop on the landing. However, the judges gave her a zero since she took longer than 30 seconds to restart. 

What’s Next: Oklahoma and Alabama will advance out of this session and compete against LSU and Utah in the second semifinal on April 16. Arkansas will have two individuals competing: Kennedy Hambrick qualified in the all around and teammate Maggie O’Hara will compete on bars. Missouri also had two individual qualifiers: Hannah McCrary on floor and Sydney Schaffer on beam. Labat is advancing to nationals for vault.

Salt Lake City Regional

Nationals Qualifiers

  • Teams: Utah, LSU
  • All around: Hannah Scharf (Arizona State)
  • Vault: Raena Worley (Kentucky)
  • Bars: Cairo Leonard-Baker (Arizona State)
  • Beam: Bailey Bunn (Kentucky)
  • Floor: Malia Hargrove (Arizona)

The Big Storyline: In this meet’s preview, we mused that “there are worlds where someone besides Utah and LSU moves on to nationals, but there aren’t many of them.” On Saturday night, we briefly passed through one of those worlds. Utah began the meet with its best bar rotation of the season and never pumped the breaks, easily finishing with the top spot at the meet. Not to be outdone, Arizona State opened the meet with its highest beam score since 2007. That marked the beginning of a vicious battle for the second nationals spot that carried into the final routines. Kentucky shone on beam in the third rotation and surged to a quarter tenth lead over LSU. But it was the Tigers who would move on in the end, even after some beam problems of their own to finish off the meet. Kentucky and Arizona State ended up tying with massive 197.600s; they now join the company of California’s 2019 team in scoring at or above the 197.600 mark and failing to qualify for nationals.

Individual Insights: Every event required a tie break to determine who would go to nationals, and all but one (Arizona floor star Malia Hargrove) will be from a team that competed in the regional final. Washington redshirt senior Allie Smith was close to making it on vault, but Kentucky sophomore Raena Worley ultimately won out. SEMO beam and floor worker Anna Kaziska also put up admirable performances on her events that had her in contention as well. 

Don’t Forget Us: Mere hours before round one competition began, Temple had to pull out of what would have been its first appearance at regionals in 29 years. This allowed Arizona to advance to day two, where the Wildcats posted their second highest score of the season despite ultimately missing out on the Sweet Sixteen. One of the biggest upset threats, Boise State, was poised to move onto the regional final through three rotations of semifinal one, but the Broncos had to count a fall on beam, which ultimately landed them in fourth place. 

Records: During Friday’s evening session, Utah State posted its first ever score above 196 in a regionals appearance. Earlier that day, Southern Utah earned its highest regionals team score since 2015. In the regional final, Kentucky tied its program record score, and Raena Worley tied the program record all around mark with a big 39.750. Lastly, Utah qualified for its 45th consecutive appearance at nationals. 

Controversies: LSU ending the night on its weakest event, beam, was a story before it even happened. While the final lineup met expectations in terms of performance, the judges’ scores for shaky routines broke the gymternet; and for better or for worse, they ultimately punched the Tigers’ ticket to nationals. 

What’s Next: LSU and Utah will advance out of this regional and compete against Oklahoma and Alabama in semifinal two on April 16. Arizona State will have two individuals competing: Hannah Scharf qualified for the all around and teammate Cairo Leonard-Baker will compete on bars. Kentucky also had two individual qualifiers: Raena Worley on vault and Bailey Bunn on beam. Hargrove will represent Arizona on floor. 

Full Results

Click and expand the events below to see full results from each session of the regional championships.

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Article by the editors of College Gym News

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