Fantasy Central: Week 2

Fantasy gym—like everything since the COVID pandemic began—is a little different this season. The official game isn’t running because Kristen and the College Fantasy Gymnastics crew welcomed a little one to their family (congrats!). However, we know many of you are playing in private leagues, or are using the brand new site Gymlytics from Twitter user GymChem, so Fantasy Central lives on!

We’re switching up the weekly cadence to match Gymlytics’: The fantasy “week” begins with Friday meets, ends with any Thursday ones and trading happens every Monday via waiver wire. However, you’ll still find us here every Tuesday talking about “next week.”

This is your one-stop-shop for all things fantasy each week. We’ll be tracking injuries, byes and double headers, and giving you tips and tricks to put forward your best possible team.

Well, it was a wild ride, but we survived the first week of fantasy! I, for one, am glad it was a practice week because I was lacking a few scores on some events. There were a lot of COVID withdrawals, and a lot of mystery absences. We’ll be tracking those here every week since it seems like it’ll be a trend for 2022.

COVID and Injury Updates

COVID Absences (confirmed): Kalyxta Gamaio (Arkansas), Abby Johnston (Arkansas), Frankie Price (Arkansas), Leah Smith (Arkansas), Cami Weaver (Arkansas)

Gymnasts absent from lineups without reason: Stephanie Berger (Ohio State), Anika Dujakovic (Nebraska), Kaitlyn Ewald (Illinois), Aleah Finnegan (LSU), Kaitlyn Higgins (Nebraska), Katherine Klugman (Illinois), Ellie Lazzari (Florida), Lea Mitchell (Michigan State), Shallon Olsen (Alabama), Arayah Simons (Illinois), Nyah Smith (Michigan State), Tory Vetter (Ohio State)

Note that Morgan Hurd (Florida) is with the team but not yet able to compete due to the NCAA eligibility certification process. She also announced today that she has received surgery on her knee for a torn ACL. She is presumably out for the season.


  • Nhyla Bryant – Georgia – in a boot on a scooter (1/6/22)
  • Riley Milbrandt – Georgia – in a boot (1/6/22)
  • Olivia Reed – Minnesota – out for season (1/7/22)
  • Jade Vella-Wright – Iowa State – out for season (1/7/22)
  • Phoebe Turner – Iowa State – out for season (1/7/22)
  • Madelyn Langkamp – Iowa State – out for season (1/7/22)
  • Natalie Horowitz – Iowa State – out for season (1/7/22)
  • Emma Ricks – Iowa State – out for season (1/7/22)
  • Hallie Thompson – North Carolina – ACL (1/7/22)
  • Dahlia Solorzano-Caruso – Bowling Green – unknown (1/7/22)
  • Sami Durante – LSU – thumb injury (1/7/22)
  • Allison LaNasa – North Carolina – on crutches (1/7/22)
  • Lexi Nibbs – LSU – boot (1/7/22)
  • Amoree Lockhart – Denver- retirement (1/7/22)
  • Alissa Fuelling – Minnesota – unknown (1/8/22)
  • Sophia Steinmeyer – Iowa State- removed from injury list (1/8/22)
  • Sophia Rios – Eastern Michigan – crutches (1/8/22)
  • Adeline Kenlin – Iowa- removed from injury list (1/8/22)
  • Kara Eaker – Utah – ankle injury (1/8/22)
  • Nicoletta Koulos – Michigan – wrist injury (1/8/22)
  • Haleigh Bryant – LSU – plantar fascia related (1/8/22)
  • Jordyn Paradise – Alabama- removed from injury list (1/9/22)
  • Olivia Trautman – Oklahoma – knee tendonitis (1/9/22)

Week 1 Byes and Doubles

Byes: Alaska

Doubles: Georgia, Iowa, UW-Oshkosh, William & Mary

Deep Cuts for Deep Leagues in Week 1

Tips for players in leagues with 10-plus players, where you need to be a little more creative to fill out lineups; especially during big bye weeks. 

Vault: Bowling Green’s Taylor Jensen had a solid 9.825 to start her year; her 2021 NQS was a 9.806.

Bars: San Jose State had a strong start, led in part by all arounder Jada Mazury who nabbed a 9.925 on bars. Northern Illinois’ Natalie Hamp had a good start here as well, totaling a 9.850.

Beam: UC Davis’ Kyla Kessler is poised for another strong all-around year; she started her season with a 9.900 on beam. Lauren MacPherson also notched a 9.900 for San Jose State and is an all-arounder. Ball State senior Lauren Volpe is still a strong beamer, starting her year with a 9.850. North Carolina’s strong debut was headlined by exquisite beam work from Julia Knower for a 9.925.

Floor: Northern Illinois standout Tara Kofmehl had an excellent start to 2022 with a 9.925 on floor. Bowling Green all arounder Taylor Jensen looks especially strong on the event this year, notching a 9.875. Megan Ray put up a huge 9.900 for UC Davis. San Jose State’s Emma Milne also had a strong outing for a 9.875.

Starts, Sits and Pickups for Week 1

Are you playing in a smaller league and still looking for advice about big names? Are you in a deep league but not sure what to do with that OU beam specialist? These tips are for you!

Vault: Alabama is being cautious with Luisa Blanco‘s shoulder injury; we’ll see her in the all-around eventually, but she won’t be in the vault lineup for now. Penn State’s Jessica Johanson had an excellent debut; the freshman notched a 9.825 on vault at the very tightly scored Keystone Classic. She was solid on bars and floor as well. It appears that Haleigh Bryant will at least miss some time after her foot injury last week; we’d keep her out of lineups for now.

Bars: Denver’s Rylie Mundell is healthy and in the all-around; she was especially strong on vault and bars in her debut. Michigan State is off to a huge start; Spartan Delanie Harkness tallied a 9.900 on bars in her all-around campaign. Iowa’s Alexandra Greenwald, more known for her floor prowess, notched a 9.900 on bars.

Beam: Emma Brown is back for Denver and started her year with a 9.850 on beam. She competed floor as well. Trinity Thomas was absent from beam and floor for the Gators; in post-meet press Jenny Rowland said Thomas and Ellie Lazzari were resting, giving the rest of the team a chance to get competition experience. Lazzari is expected on “a few” events against Alabama. Maggie O’Hara had hip surgery and seems to be exclusively on bars for now for the Razorbacks.

Floor: LSU is still managing Kiya Johnson‘s Achilles, so we won’t see her on floor until early February. Ohio State freshman Jenna Hlavach had a solid debut on floor for a 9.875; she also has a 10.0 vault and competes bars. If you were smart enough to draft KJ Johnson, keep her in your lineups; she’ll only be more important with Bryant injured.

Waiver Wire Wrap-up

Finally, we have a waiver wire in gymnastics! Who should you prioritize this week? Since Fantasy Central comes out on Tuesdays, keep in mind that these tips are catered toward next week.

Since the waiver wire doesn’t open until week three, here are some names that are likely available in most leagues to keep an eye on until then.

Vault: Katie Kowalski (Central Michigan), Emma Morgenthaler (Sacramento State), Jah’Liyah
Bedminster (LIU)

Bars: Anna Grace McCullough (Eastern Michigan), Jaudai Lopes (San Jose State), Isabelle Schaefer (North Carolina)

Beam: Giana Kalefe (Michigan State), Eliza Millar (BYU), Lindsay Chia (Yale)

Floor: Alana Anderson (Northern Illinois), Bell Johnson (Oklahoma), Ashley Veglucci (Central Michigan)

Notes From the Fantasy Roundtable

Though Arizona didn’t compete this weekend, editor Rebecca noticed that Jessica Castles and Elena Deets appeared to be absent from team photos over the weekend.

READ THIS NEXT: The Dismount: Week 1

Article by Emily Minehart; additional reporting from Kalley Leer, Rebecca Scally, Jenna King and Elizabeth Grimsley

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