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Last Week in College Gym: June 28

There’s a lot that happens on the gymternet each week. So much so that it can be hard to keep track of it all. From training updates and COVID year announcements to recruiting rumors and coaching news, we don’t blame you for missing some important points here and there.

That’s where we come in. Last Week in College Gym is your one-stop shop for all the important headlines from the previous week in college gymnastics. No matter if you’re taking a social media break, went on vacation or just don’t have the capacity to follow every single gymnast, team and fan, we have you covered.

Top Storylines

U.S. Olympic Team Named

Sunisa Lee (Auburn), Jordan Chiles (UCLA), Grace McCallum (Utah), MyKayla Skinner (Utah) and Jade Carey (Oregon State) will join Simone Biles in Tokyo this summer. Skinner was named as the additional individual while Carey was confirmed as the second individual after earning her spot on the World Apparatus Cup circuit. Kayla DiCello (Florida), Leanne Wong (Florida), Kara Eaker (Utah) and Emma Malabuyo (UCLA) are the replacement athletes.

Myia Hambrick Joins Utah as Volunteer Coaching Assistant

Former LSU All-American Myia Hambrick will be bringing her talents to Utah in her collegiate coaching debut. Hambrick has been working at the club level at Georgia Elite since completing her college career. Utah’s prior assistant coaches, Garrett Griffeth and Courtney McCool, will be with LSU for the 2021-22 season. 

Linda Zivat Transfers to Iowa

Zivat was on the Michigan State roster for two seasons but never competed after a broken foot sidelined her. She has been training her Tsuk full and two E passes on floor—a double layout and front double full—and will be valuable on both events for the Hawkeyes.

What our editors are saying…

“Depending on her health, Zivat could be a game changer for the Hawkeyes. She never competed for Michigan State after a broken foot kept her out of her freshman season, but she has shared a number of training updates on Instagram recently. Her Tsuk full is extremely clean and could easily anchor vault for Iowa, and assuming her foot is healthy, she’ll be an asset on floor as well, bringing both a double layout and front double full. Zivat’s remaining eligibility is a little unclear; she should have either three or four years on her clock.” – managing editor, Emily Minehart

Danna Durante Named North Carolina Head Coach

Durante, who most recently served as the head coach at Georgia from 2012-2017, was named the fourth head coach in UNC gymnastics history Friday morning. She will take over the role from interim head coach Marie Case Denick, who filled in during the 2021 season after longtime head coach Derek Galvin announced his retirement after 39 years in June of 2020.

What our editors are saying…

“Durante is a perfect hire for UNC. I personally felt her time at Georgia was cut short prematurely, especially in hindsight when comparing her teams’ results to those of the most recent Georgia squads. Nevertheless, Durante’s position at UNC is one where she will be able to succeed. The Tar Heels have been on the edge of taking the next step for a while now, and if Durante can make even incremental gains, it’ll be a success. She has the tools to do it too. She’ll not only be inheriting a talented squad that includes regionals qualifier Elizabeth Culton, but 5-star commit Lali Dekanoidze is set to join the team for the 2022 season, as well as 5-star recruit Gwendolyn Fink for 2023.” – editor in chief, Elizabeth Grimsley

Other Newsworthy Items

  • The Ohio State freshmen have arrived on campus, as well as newcomers at UNC and Arkansas!
  • Stephanie Geislinger was announced as the new head coach for Winona State after serving as an assistant for the team in the 2021 season. 

Training Updates

  • LIU rising sophomore Izzy Hilliard is working on a Tkachev on bars, which will upgrade her routine to a 10.0 start.
  • Ohio State showcased some of its gymnasts on its Instagram Story. Lexi Edwards showed a Maloney to Pak combo, Zoe Schweitzer did a front double on floor, Colby Miller was seen with a hitch kick to side aerial to beat jump combo and Sarah Miller worked on a FTY into the pit.
  • Rising Illinois junior Mia Townes was seen training a double layout in the pit on her Instagram Story.
  • Rutgers rising sophomore Christiana Thompson posted herself training a double pike to her Instagram Story.
  • Auburn rising junior Piper Smith was seen training a switch half to bhs combination on beam.
  • Incoming freshman Emma Brittingham showed off a Gienger while classmate Izzy Krulich was seen training clear hip to Hindorff drills on the UW-Stout Instagram Story. 
  • Izzy Fox, a fifth-year from Illinois State, is training a FHS front layout to double full combination on floor. 
  • Centenary’s Instagram featured a FTDL bar dismount from incoming freshman Emma Lavelle. 

READ THIS NEXT: Last Week in College Gym: June 21

Article by the editors of College Gym News

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