Fantasy Central: Week 6

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.

Week six. How are we here? Last week was, uh, a 10-a-palooza. And, look, I just don’t imagine it’ll slow down. Not until the judges have their 2023 preseason chat about deductions to focus on anyway, so we’re just in it for this year. Regardless of your opinions on that trend overall, it sure is a blast for fantasy! I saw some “I hit 199?!” tweets this week. If that’s you, congrats!

Also, a side note: We have some weirdo meet days this week! The meet on Thursday, for fantasy purposes, between Oshkosh and Winona is week five, so they’re technically on a fantasy bye this week. Don’t forget that Minnesota and Maryland added a dual on Valentine’s Day next Monday, so they’re on doubles. It’s the ever-precious Big Ten, so I’m sure something adorable will happen in that one.

Injury Updates

  • Ashley Lane – Michigan – in a sling (1/30/22)
  • Abigail Vides – Michigan – in a boot (1/30/22)
  • Frida Esparza – UCLA – in a boot (1/30/22)
  • Natalie Yang – Penn – in a boot (1/30/22)
  • Lynnzee Brown – Denver – torn Achilles (1/30/22)
  • Rachael Lukacs – Georgia – medical retirement (2/1/22)
  • Alex Greenwald – removed from injury list (back in regular lineups) – Iowa (2/1/22)
  • Logan Clagg – UC Davis – torn ACL (2/3/22)
  • Karenna McSweeny – removed from injury list (FX exhibition) – Iowa (2/4/22)
  • Emily Liszewski – Pitt – in a boot with crutches (2/6/22)
  • Marcela Bonifasi – Alaska – unknown (2/6/22)

Week 6 Byes and Doubles

Byes: Eastern Michigan, UW-Oshkosh, Winona

Doubles: Alaska, Centenary, Cortland, Gustavus Adolphus, Illinois State, Ithaca, Maryland, Michigan State, Minnesota, Northern Illinois, Southern Connecticut, UW-Stout

Deep Cuts for Deep Leagues in Week 6

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: Did you know that Caitlin Kho is ranked No. 18 nationally on vault? Yep. She scored her second 9.900 of the year last week. For the Illini, Mia Townes wasn’t dressed out this week; not a great sign. We did, though, see the return of Arayah Simons to her old, huge vault form after a first outing below her old standards on Friday. She also exhibitioned on bars and beam. If you’ve been holding onto her, now might be the time to put her up on those three.

Bars: We all knew LIU’s Mara Titarsolej would be a bar star, but she hasn’t scored below 9.900 in four outings. She added a 9.925 on Sunday and has become an utter bars machine. Meredith Robinson was back to her 9.800 ways for N.C. State this week.

Beam: SEMO’s Anna Kaziska has settled back into her old self. Her last two weeks on beam and floor have been what we’re accustomed to seeing from her, so if you’ve been wary of sticking her in your lineups, you can probably do so with more ease now. New Hampshire had a weird day at Denver; we hate it when a great smaller program has a rough go at one of the big dogs on TV. Don’t let it scare you away from your UNH beamers, though. It really seemed like a fluke. Alyssa Al-Ashari nailed her beam set for a 9.900 on Friday. She seems to have really settled into her collegiate program over the past few weeks.

Floor: Illinois State’s Madison Kipp added floor to go in the all-around on Saturday. She put in a 9.825. Based on the way the way floor has gone for the Redbirds thus far, she seems likely to stay on all four. Her teammate Jaye Mack was missing this week; we’ll keep our eyes on that. If you’ve been keeping Pittsburgh’s Hallie Copperwheat off of floor after a rough start, now would be the time to slide her back into the all-around. She really settled in this week.

Starts, Sits and Pickups for Week 6

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: Florida continues to be a fantasy player’s nightmare. Jenny Rowland appears to be pacing by resting her heavy hitters on a rotating basis. Sloane Blakely vaulted last week; her vault numbers have not been stellar, so it doesn’t seem likely she’ll be in this lineup once Rowland settles into her ideal postseason six. That said, the Gators are definitely still searching for their sixth vaulter. Auburn is another team just not quite sure of its vault lineup yet. We know from Jeff Graba that there are a lot of new 10.0 starts in the works, but we haven’t seen them so far, so that lineup is in flux. Tara Walsh was back this week; she’s definitely in Graba’s top eight. Whether she goes in the meet seems to depend on how warmups go. Put her in your lineups with caution.

Bars: We can go ahead and call Jacey Vore likely week-to-week for this lineup. She has three hits and a 9.925 to her name now. That does mean one of the regulars will need to sit since Vore has only been in when one of Natalie Wojcik or Sierra Brooks is resting on bars. By averages and season high, the person who loses her spot might just be Naomi Morrison. Something to watch. Maggie O’Hara has been struggling; we know she had hip surgery during the offseason. While she’s capable of huge numbers, we have to wonder if Jordyn Wieber will pull her out to rest for a few meets. Now would be the time to do it, so she’ll be ready to go by mid-March. If that happens, perhaps we’ll see Mackenzie Sedlacek back in the lineup.

Beam: Karrie Thomas remains out of this lineup. She was back on bars on Sunday, for a big 9.925, presumably in Danae Fletcher’s spot. We know KJ Kindler is not sentimental; it seems like whichever of the two is more on on a given day gets the spot. That’s a headache for fantasy, of course, but with the 10-up format you can afford the zero; the potential 9.900 Thomas brings on beam is too good to miss. Jessica Hutchinson stepped up in a big way for Denver in Lynnzee Brown’s absence. Her 9.900 on beam and 9.925 on floor will have the Pioneers feeling steadier about their post-Brown lineups. We imagine she’ll remain in both spots.

Floor: In a frustrating turn for fantasy players, Makarri Doggette skipped beam last week but added floor for the first time for a huge 9.900. She’s been just fine on beam but really thrived on floor. It looks like that spot might be between Doggette and Mati Waligora, who skipped the event on Friday. Jury’s out on who will get the spot next week, but if Doggette has another big hit, we could see her staying. Shania Adams hit beam in Doggette’s spot there for a 9.900, so she seems likely to stay in that lineup which has had some fall struggles. UCLA got its ducks in a row this week, and part of that was seeing Sekai Wright on floor. She put in a stronger number than Emma Malabuyo and Sara Ulias have; they were pulled off floor this week. It seems likely Wright will get the nod again, especially after going viral. Mya Hooten was slated for floor at Illinois but left the arena crying after the touch warmup. She had a weird mistake on bars then vaulted well, so hopefully she was just a little off on the day. She was back out cheering on her teammates, so we’re crossing our fingers that it was a stinger or a fluke and she’ll be back in action this week.

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.

Vault: San Jose State knocked it out of the park last week, in part on the heels of a great vault for a 9.875 form Madison Kirsch. She was back in the floor lineup, too. Davis’ Keanna Abraham is the best vaulter by average in the MPSF; she’s almost certain to get you a 9.800-plus in your lineup.

Bars: Brown’s Mei Li Costa has always been a bars star, but she hit the stratosphere last week with a 9.925. If you can absorb some inconsistency, she’s a great pickup. Alana Anderson added bars at the end of January for Northern Illinois, and has gone 9.800 and 9.900 so far. She’ll get you a good floor number, too!

Beam: Double check your league to see if Stanford’s Isabela Onyshko is available; she was out last year but has been sailing along so far for the Cardinal. Emerson Hurst got off to a slow start but has back-to-back 9.925s. If she remains available, she’s a steal!

Floor: Speaking of San Jose State, Cameron Kelperis has been excellent on floor the past two weeks, including a 9.900. UC Davis’ Megan Ray has also been spectacular on floor and hit a 9.925 on Sunday. I’m going to throw a name at you: Kelsey Gates from RIC. I know, I know. But she has a 9.850 and 9.825 the past two weeks. If you’re desperate for one more floor number, do it! Brooke Donabedian at Temple is worth a look, too, after yet another mid-9.800 this week.

READ THIS NEXT: It Takes a Village—and a Lot of Heart—to Put on a Meet in the PMAC

Article by Emily Minehart and Tara Greave

Like what you see? Consider donating to support our efforts throughout the year

One comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.