Biggest Movers and Improvers in the Class of 2022 Recruit Ratings

So much can change in one year! Higher scores, improved execution and more consistent performances can help athletes nail the 4- or 5-star threshold. After a remarkable 2021 season, six gymnasts moved up from three to five stars while 12 additional gymnasts who were unrated last year are now 4-star recruits.

Nikki Smith

College: Michigan State

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Biggest Reason for Improvement: small improvements on every event, especially bars

Smith’s current routines are almost identical to last year’s, but she’s improved in execution. Her new-found polish on bars made an especially big difference, though this was still the event that prevented her from winning all around gold at level 10 nationals.

Read more about Smith.

Anna Roberts

College: Uncommitted

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Biggest Reason for Improvement: small improvements on every event, especially bars

Roberts has shown improvements on all apparatuses, but she particularly impressed on bars this year. She’s now connecting her Maloney to the Pak salto, which eliminates one tricky handstand in her routine, and her half pirouette on the low bar is much cleaner.

Read more about Roberts.

Paige Thaxton

College: Uncommitted

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Biggest Reason for Improvement: beam and floor

Thaxton’s ratings on beam and floor have both improved substantially, but for opposite reasons. On beam she’s always had very good form, but in 2019 she struggled with consistency. On floor her scores have always been consistent, but this season her landings have become less bouncy and more precise. This year she also added a double layout to her already difficult full-in.

Read more about Thaxton.

Kaylen Morgan

College: Michigan

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Biggest Reason for Improvement: beam

The senior elite is becoming increasingly polished. This is particularly noticeable on beam, where her usual bent legs on her acrobatic series are slowly disappearing. Her Pak salto on bars has always been stunning, but this year it’s stopped being spoiled by an occasional knee bend.

Read more about Morgan.

Payton Harris

College: Ohio State

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Biggest Reason for Improvement: vault

Harris has become a joy to watch on all events, but this year she’s especially impressed on vault, debuting a solid Yurchenko 1.5 to replace her shaky Yurchenko full.

Read more about Harris.

Bridget Bourque

College: Kentucky

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Biggest Reason for Improvement: vault and floor

When Bourque committed to Kentucky, we wrote that she looked like the new Mollie Korth. One year later, she’s outlived the already high expectations. On vault, Bourque replaced her Yurchenko layout full/tucked full with a consistent Yurchenko 1.5, which she failed to perform well only at nationals. On floor, she now opens her routine with a strong full-in that replaced her double tuck. The Wildcats’ future looks bright!

Read more about Bourque.

Bryce Wilson

College: LSU

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: small improvements on every event

Wilson’s always shown immense potential, as her form and amplitude are stunning. However, in the past she struggled a lot with nerves, which crept back again this year in the two most important meets of the season, the Nastia Liukin Cup and level 10 nationals. Yet most of her scores have increased by more than one point this season compared to 2019, and when she hits, she can score over 39 points. Her full-twisting double pike on floor is one of the best performed in the country, and so is her Yurchenko full, which won her the national title last month.

Read more about Wilson.

Kylie Eaquinto

College: BYU

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: small improvements on every event, especially bars and beam

After a few years of limited all around competition, Eaquinto came back super strong on all four pieces this year. She especially improved on bars and beam, where her scores are higher and more consistent than ever before. Her Maloney to Pak salto and full-in dismount on bars will score well in college, and her side aerial to layout stepout on beam is the type of difficulty that both judges and fans will like, too.

Read more about Eaquinto.

Karina Muñoz

College: Iowa

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: beam and floor

Muñoz has great basics, so her form has always been good, but this year she was much more confident in her skills, posting better scores especially on beam and floor. On vault she also debuted a Yurchenko 1.5, which is still not perfect, but it could make a big difference in college.

Read more about Muñoz.

Casey Brown

College: California

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: small improvements on every event

Brown has always had beautiful form and posted high scores in past seasons, but this year she achieved a new level of consistency. She has especially gorgeous lines on bars, and her new Yurchenko 1.5 made the difference on vault.

Read more about Brown.

Brooklyn Rowray

College: Minnesota

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: floor

Rowray still struggled with consistency on bars and beam this year, but her very high scores on floor made the difference compared to last year. There, she doesn’t perform the highest difficulty, but she’s learned to stick her landings perfectly. Her form on beam is excellent, and hopefully she’ll manage to keep her nerves at bay next year.

Read more about Rowray.

Trista Goodman

College: Southern Utah

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: beam

The former junior elite was close to the 3-star cut last year, but some low scores and execution issues prevented her from reaching that threshold. This year, Goodman looked much more polished and competition ready. She improved a lot across the board, but consistency and good form on beam really made the difference.

Read more about Goodman.

Nya Kraus

College: Uncommitted

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: vault

The Canadian upgraded her Yurchenko layout to a full this year, making her more competitive on vault, the only apparatus that spoiled her all around potential in past years. 

Read more about Kraus.

Nailah Adams

College: Uncommitted

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: vault, beam and floor

Adams’ most important upgrade is her Yurchenko 1.5 on vault, which replaced her Yurchenko full. On the other events her routines are almost identical, but her landings on floor are cleaner this year. Her scores have improved on beam, too, though her routines remain a bit shaky.

Read more about Adams

Sarah Moraw

College: Minnesota

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: small improvements on every event

After struggling with inconsistent scores in 2019 and 2020, Moraw really seemed to take ownership of her gymnastics this season, which allowed her to win the all around title at level 10 nationals for Senior A. Her lines stand out particularly on beam, though she can also show off elegant tumbling on floor. Bars will probably never be her best event, but her form and scores have improved greatly there over the past couple of years.

Read more about Moraw.

Soraya Shahani

College: Uncommitted

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: small improvements on every event

Shahani’s ratings suffer on vault, where she performs only a Yurchenko layout, as well as a bit on bars, but she excels on beam and has good execution on floor, too.

Read more about Shahani.

Jennifer McMillan

College: Oregon State

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: small improvements on every event, especially bars

McMillan has improved on all events this year but particularly on bars, where she changed her routine composition entirely. Last year, she competed a straddled Jaeger, a bail to handstand and a blind full to double tuck; this year, she performs a Maloney to bail to handstand and a double layout. This routine is better executed and better received by the judges, and it won her a level 10 national title in May.

Read more about McMillan.

Emily Wisehart

College: Uncommitted

CGN Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Last Year’s Rating: Not Rated

Biggest Reason for Improvement: vault

A gymnast prone to injury, Wisehart was limited only to a couple of events for much of 2019 and 2020. Her scores on bars and beam were higher this year than in the past, but her big Yurchenko full-on pike off is what truly made the difference.

Read more about Wisehart.

READ THIS NEXT: CGN Roundtable: On Recruit Ratings


Article by Talitha Ilacqua

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