Oshkosh WIAC

NCGA Nationals Preview

With the NCGA national championships on Saturday, there are plenty of titles still to be claimed and history to be made. The six teams qualified after nabbing the top three spots at their respective regionals in the East and the West. Tthe individuals competing punched their ticket through a combination of consistency of top scores throughout the season and finishing among the top performers at regionals. While five of the six qualifying teams are the same from last season, you’ll also see a host of new faces featured at the 2023 edition of the event.


  • UW-Oshkosh (193.100)
  • Brockport (192.200)
  • UW-La Crosse (191.850)
  • UW-Stout (190.475)
  • Springfield (189.150)
  • Ithaca (189.050)



  • Glynis Curcione (UB)*
  • Gianna Mirigliano (AA)**


  • Danielle Jaworski (FX)

Rhode Island

  • Kelsey Gates (AA)***
  • Olivia Keyes (AA)*
  • Morgan Lunn (BB)*
  • Emma Tucker (BB)

UW-Eau Claire

  • Tia Ravara (AA)
  • Harriet Toth (AA)


  • Ashley Cromer (VT)
  • Alyssa DeLorme (UB, FX)*
  • Alex Panetta (VT)


  • Elaine Copeland (UB)
  • Estee Flom (UB)
  • Sarah Knetzke (BB)
  • Kelsey Kolhoff (FX)*
  • Carleigh Moore (VT, FX)
  • Faith Mylin (FX)
  • Richella Velarmino (UB)
  • Kara Welsh (VT, FX)

Winona State

  • Kaylee Bateman (UB)
  • Breanna Ho (AA)
  • Kennedy O’Connor (VT)
  • Taryn Sellner (BB, FX)

With so many talented competitors to sort through, it’s difficult to figure out who’s most likely to make a huge splash at this competition. Lucky for you, we’ve been following these athletes all season for such a time as this. Here are the athletes most likely to leave nationals with an individual title.


Emily Buffington, UW-Oshkosh

Although Buffington cruised her way to the top of the all-around record books for Oshkosh this season, her incredible front handspring front pike vault with jaw-dropping height and a swoon-worthy stick has her on the top of the list. 

Sydney Schumaker, Brockport

The reigning regional vault champ two years in a row, her tucked Yurchenko one and a half could certainly put her atop the podium at nationals. She’s a reliable vaulter with a history of titles. 

Kara Welsh, UW-Whitewater

Coming into nationals with the top SAS score on vault, she also has the highest vault score out of any individuals competing with a 9.850. And, her laid-out Yurchenko full with that height and form is tough to beat.

Honorable Mention: Reanna McGibboney** (UW-Oshkosh), Alex Wood (UW-La Crosse), Daejah Rose (UW-Oshkosh), Maren Eramo (Brockport)


Glynis Curcione, Cortland

You may not find Curcione at the very top of the high scores list, but her SAS highlights her consistency on an event that not many can execute well over a long season. Plus, her Maloney to Pak connection makes her routine stand out from the crowd. 

Kerrie Legault, UW-La Crosse

Coming into nationals with a share of last year’s bar title, a title shared with Buffington, Taylor Bushey, and Winter Osborne, Legault swings into the meet with not only the top SAS score but the top high score in DIII this season: 9.825. She’ll want to show up with the cleanest set outright if she wants that title for herself.

Emma Grace Sargent, Brockport

Scoring as high as 9.775 twice this season, with a healthy sprinkle of 9.725s or better on a good day, Sargent could certainly find herself atop the podium. However, a few missteps or an uncharacteristic 9.675 won’t be enough in this field. 

Honorable Mention: Rachel Swick (Brockport), Rachel Chesley (La Crosse), Taylor Bushey (Brockport), Estee Flom (UW-Whitewater), Emily Buffinton (UW-Oshkosh)


Cameryn Nichols, Ithaca

Arguably the best beam worker in DIII gymnastics this year, Nichols rewrote the Bombers gymnastics history book this year with a new program high. Only consistency can hold her back, but she’s gone 9.825 or better four times this season, twice in March, including at the East regionals. 

Sarah Knetzke, UW-Whitewater

The 2022 defending beam champ, since the second week of the season Knetzke hasn’t made a major error. In fact, she’s gone on to score 9.725 or better four times—three of which came in the last three weeks, with an average just over 9.750 during that span.  

Jordan Halcom, UW-La Crosse

Although her average lands her in 13th amongst DIII beam workers, Halcom can throw up a 9.850 alongside the likes of Knetzke and Nichols. A great routine from Halcom all but guarantees a beam title. Otherwise, a more consistent Natalie Galioto will be giving the title a charge. 

Honorable Mention: Galioto (Brockport), Delaney Cienkus (Oshkosh), Emily Kobusky (Ithaca), Morgan Lunn (Rhode Island)


Kyra Figurelli, Brockport

If you’re new here, welcome to the Figurelli Floor Show. If you’re an old hat and longtime DIII fan, seeing Figurelli here is no mystery. She won floor last year with a casual 9.900 and with a full-twisting double back to boot. This year she’s upped her top season score to a 9.925 and hasn’t scored below a 9.625. Casual, casual, casual. 

Kelsey Gates***, Rhode Island

Runner up last year, Gates isn’t a far second from Figurelli. How close is she? Her top score is just 0.025 off Figurelli’s, and her SAS is 0.0063 off. OK, so you say SAS is ridiculous. Her average is just 0.006 away. And just like Figurelli, she’s not scored below a 9.625 this year either. 

Kelsey Kollhoff, UW-Whitewater

The NCGA-East isn’t the only place you’ll find incredible floor workers. Kollhoff is right behind Gates and Figurelli, ready to fight for a title, and rightly so. With similarly big scores and consistency, Kollhoff hasn’t gone below a 9.650 this season and has a high of 9.875 to her name. 

Honorable Mention: Lauren Blair (Brockport), Devon Rosier (Springfield), Kirsten Paultre (Brockport), Faith Mylin (UW-Whitewater)


Olivia Keyes, Rhode Island

Keyes took second to Emily North last year, just 0.175 away from tying for that top spot. Her 38.425 was her best all-around last season, and with a 38.375 just a few weeks ago, Keyes can make a run for that title. Adding to her momentum, she just tied for the East regional all-around title with fellow all-around qualifiers Gianna Mirigliano (Cortland) and Rhode Island teammate Gates. 

Emily Buffington, UW-Oshkosh

Buffington comes into nationals with all the chatter of not if she could take an event title but how many. And with Oshkosh qualifying with such a big score, she could walk away with the team title too. Her 38.800 eclipses the next closest all-around high this season by nearly half a point, from none other than a fellow WIAC gymnast. 

Kiara Brown***, UW-Stout

For Brown to take the title ahead of Buffington, she’ll need to comfortably rely on her consistency and then a touch of nationals adrenaline. Her season high might be four tenths behind Buffington, but her SAS isn’t, which is only 0.0813 lower. In other words, minor mistakes and this all-around title is anyone’s game.

Honorable Mention: Kelsey Gates*** (Rhode Island), Gianna Mirigliano** (Cortland), Skye Cohen (Ithaca), Breanna Ho (Winona)

*Program record holder

**Regional Newcomer of the Year

***Regional Gymnast of the Year

READ THIS NEXT: 2023 Regionals Draw, Individual Qualifiers Announced

Article by Allison Freeman and Tavia Smith

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