LIVE BLOG: USAG Nationals Semifinal 1

Much like last year, Lindenwood and Air Force enter the afternoon semifinal together favored to advance, but this year Lindenwood is the No. 1 seed overall. Don’t get ahead of yourself, though: This Lindenwood team has a very high ceiling, but it’s not quite as consistent as in years past. Air Force, too, is wonderful on its best days but high-variance across all four events. For Lindenwood, it’s ultra-consistent floor that lets the Lions weather the storm when other events get dicey, while Air Force is at its best on beam this year.

We do have a very real upset threat in this session in No. 5 Brown. The Bears have set record after record this season, perhaps most remarkably on floor when sophomore Julia Bedell scored a 9.950 and broke a record she previously shared with an obscure alumna you probably don’t remember named Alicia Sacramone. After a disappointment at the GEC Championship, Brown enters nationals hungry. Also historic is Southern Connecticut, which impressively edged out Cornell this season to make its first championship appearance in almost two decades. The Owls’ roster is huge and stylistically diverse: It’ll keep you on your toes.

Rotation 1: Lindenwood VT, SCSU UB, Air Force BB, Brown FX

Carswell (AFA): Double wolf, lovely. Clean through acro, tictoc, split to straddle quarter. Cat leap switch side, baby adjustment. BHS gainer full hop back. 9.75, I didn’t see a mistake but a lot was going on so I totally would have missed it.

Poley (BU): Front lay front full looks good. Switch side Popa, double back awkward with a long lunge. Steady start. 9.675

Jones (LU): FTY, piked down with low chest but stuck. 9.75

Lopez (LU): FTY, flung out and VERY deep with a big hop forward. 9.475

Looked like a re-cast needed for SCSU’s lead off. 8.95 there.

Brochi (AFA): Nice BHS LOSO. Switch to straddle forward is pretty. One and a half twist, stuck-ish.

SCSU another issue on bars, we’re not getting any names there.

Kramer (BU): Missed the first pass, switch ring switch half very pretty. Great double back, good control.

Arnold (SCSU): Missed the first handstand, blind to Jaeger high and clean. Cast handstands not great. Blind full double back, step.

Caffey (LU): FTY, big with soft knees throughout, big hop back. 9.713

Greene (AFA): Gainer BHS LOSO, adjustment. Switch switch short of splits and a check. One and a half dismount, soft knees and stuck.

El Mammann (BU): Double pike, a touch overpowered, long lunge but stays in bounds. Switch half, short of splits, to wolf 3/2 jump actually rotated. Nice switch half Popa. 9.6

Zander (AFA): Acro series LOVELY. Glanced at vault and she had a major bend check and fell, not even sure on what skill.

Jordan (SCSU): Clear hip to Deltchev to overshoot, wow. DLO deep with a big step forward.

Griswold (LU): One and a half, big and clean, substantial hop back. 9.8

Davis (BU): Maybe my favorite floor routine in USAG. Double pike, great, presentation just shines. Switch ring to switch ring half, nice whip half front full, arabesque turn, beautiful. 9.813 yas.

Krueger (CU): FTY tucked, substantial scoot-step back.

Brady (CU) Yurchenko half tucked, way short and sits.

Van Zandt (BU): Front through double back, rebounds back and drops her hands.

Price (Fisk): Maloney, knees slightly soft on the backswing to great bail. Full out, deep with a big hop forward.

Ross (UB): Side aerial to aerial round off, medium check, that series scares me so bad. Split to straddle… quarter, kind of, she mostly landed it and then pivoted the quarter turn. One and a half twist deep with a hop.

Bedell (BU): NAILED the full in. Gorgeous. Front through double back, fabulous. 9.863

Imbarlina (UB): BHs LOSO, little bit of form and tentative but got there. Front aerial to split. Switch to straddle quarter with a check. Side aerial tuck 3/2 dismount, deep with a hop.

Michelini (CU): Double back, a little shuffle on the landing. Think that was a Rudi to double stag in the back corner but we’re only seeing her in the background of beam so really who’s to say? One and a half whip half good.

After 1: Lindenwood 48.775, Air Force 48.088 (yes really… I hate this too) Southern Connecticut 47.650

The commentator literally left for most of this rotation so I had to do some detective work for my IDs and I’m SO sorry to anyone I got wrong, the quad box is too small to see faces well 🙁

Rotation 2: Brown VT, Lindenwood UB, SCSU BB, Air Force FX

Carswell (AFA): Front through double back, overcooked and falls backward and OOB.

Daniels (LU): Tkachev, flexed feet, handstands are a little piked, good bail. Blind full double back stuck.

Kahl (I think???) (SCSU)L Front aerial BHS, slow and steady. The commentator CANNOT just keep leaving like this. Switch to split quarter is solid.

Contello (BU): Nice FTY, high and fairly clean, pretty close to stuck!

This sucks. I can ID a fair number of these gymnasts if I can get a clear view of their face, but in a quad box I can’t and with no commentary and live scores not updating in a timely manner there’s very little to go off.

(SCSU): Split to straddle quarter, missed the split. Switch to switch half, missed splits again and landed very awkwardly, check.

Every Lindenwood routine is Jaeger to overshoot and they’re all pretty good, so you’ve got that. I know all their faces, but I can’t see them on the feed. Ooh, a Gienger, so that’s Hannah Appleget and she stuck her DLO.

SCSU helpfully just panned over to the board that says MELANSON as she landed her dismount (tuck 3/2, squatty).

Stahlbrodt (SCSU): BHS LOSO good. Switch to straddle quarter, wolf straddle 3/4, side aerial with a little check. Drilled the double twist. I’ve been watching her for so many years and definitely know who she is but the only thing I could actually see about her was that she had a ponytail and I remembered that from march out. It’s bad over here.

Lee (SCSU): Kickover front, check, sissone. Front to back series clean and controlled, gainer front full landed on her heels with a stagger back. Front full front lay is really nice.

Cat AuCoin from Bridgeport got through bars, little bit of handstand trouble.

Carlisle (AFA): Full in, short, low chest and a step forward. Switch half… was that supposed to be a connection? We’ll never know.

Price (Fisk): Front aerial BHS LOSO falls NOOOO. Got the one and a half dismount but that’s a big problem for her AA title hopes.

Ross (UB): Double pike, a little deep but lunges fine, one and a half Barani piked down but clean otherwise.

Imbarlina (UB): Great Rudi combination to start, clean leaps except the tour jete 1/2 ring which let’s be honest, nobody’s nailing those.

After 2: Lindenwood 97.775, Brown 97.325, Air Force 96.725, SCSU 95.375

This broadcast is a travesty and I hate it here. Lindenwood holding steady while Brown has 0.6 on Air Force right now and I’m not sure who the event balance favors.

Rotation 3: Air Force VT, Brown UB, Lindenwood BB, SCSU FX

Greene (AFA): FTY, piked way down with a big hop forward. 9.575

Meccia (AFA): Way back on the table, comes in super short and hops forward. 9.038

Willis (AFA): Tucked FTY, hop to the side. 9.625

Brochi (AFA): High clean FTY, baby hop. There’s a big girl vault. 9.775

Boll (AFA): Another nice clean FTY, slightly more landing movement there. 9.813

McKean (AFA): FTY, big pike down and little hop forward.

Ross (UB): Full on tuck off, low chest and a step.

Reed-Hammon (Fisk): FTY, dynamic, big hop back.

Lee (Brown): Missed the release, got the double back, slightly short on a handstand, blind full double back with a scoot.

Richter (Brown): Blind to Jaeger, caught a little close, blind full with a soft back to double back, pace forward.

McKeown (Brown): Half turn, arched, to Tkachv. Good overshoot, double lay stuck-ish

Poley (Brown): Full turn to Gienger clean, nice bail, missed a handstand, full out stuck.

Contello (Brown): Fall on this one, didn’t see on what.

Farrell (Brown): True shap to Pak, really nice, blind full double back stuck with a little lean forward. 9.0 what? I’m very confused.

Michelini (CU): GORGEOUS first handstand, Maloney to Pak and scraped her feet on the floor, so sad. Some high bar drama and falls.

Griswold (LU): Didn’t catch a lot of details but looked good, hop in place on a one and a half dismount.

Daniels (LU): Full turn, swims a bit to straighten out, BHS LOSO check. Front aerial to beat, cartwheel gainer full. 9.6

Jones (LU): BHS LOSO, check. One and a half twist with a hop forward.

Kraus (LU): BHS LOSO great! Hitch kick switch half to beat and seeing a full split in a switch half is honestly so refreshing. Nailed the dismount.

Rush (LU): Hitch kick side somi, so steady, split half jump. Full turn good. Gainer full off the side stuck.

Barry (UB): Full turn, front aerial LOSO, big check. Switch to straddle quarter. Split to beat. She’s got such a tidy style.

Beyer (SCSU): Nice clean double back! Pretty Rudi. Great start.

Zebdi (SCSU): Double back, slightly big step back.

Stahlbrodt (SCSU): Double pike, a bit short, lunge forward.

Melanson (SCSU): Front double full punch front, gorgeous, think it stayed in bounds but not sure. Big step out of one and a half front lay.

Price (Fisk): Pretty much killing it. Double pike and back with combo pass, grat performance quality, we aren’t seeing Victoria DeMeo’s beam just to fullscreen this, two and a half twist to close. Couldn’t have done much more.

Coleman (Fisk): Double back, rebound a little into the lunge. Overcooked the double pike a little.

After 3: This was a whole situation because the scores took one of Air Force’s hit floor routines away and then gave it back at the last second so I spent the whole rotation break trying to figure out wtf had happened

Rotation 4: SCSU VT, Air Force UB, Brown BB, Lindenwood FX

Will focus on Brown and Air Force, who are only a few tenths apart in the qualification race.

Kramer (Brown): Front to back series, nice and clean, split to straddle quarter. Nice full turn, split split 3/4. Punch front full, hangs onto it for a second and then hops to salute.

McKean (AFA): Blind to pike Jaeger to overshoot blind full loose-legged to double back with a hop back.

Zander(AFA): Toe on to Maloney to bail, some arch in handstands, blind full double back deep but stuck.

McKeown (Brown): BHS LOSO, clean. Beat to straddle 3/4, big check. Falls on a side aerial. Hitch kick switch side good, made dismount,

Stahlbrodt (SCSU): Finishes her day with a tucked FTY stuck with chest a little low.

Lindenwood’s Simone Evans OOB on floor.

Brochi (AFA): Missed the first release, toe on to bail, double layout stuck WOW.

Boll (AFA): Toe to Maloney to bail, lovely. Just shy on a high bar handstand, double layout short with a big lunge forward.

Davis (Brown): Pretty full turn. BHS LOSO, medium check. Another check on leaps but breast extension, nice side aerial, the cameras just went nuts, gainer pike hop back.

Looks like Kim Kincade’s bars routine was a victim of the camera randomly going nuts for a moment there.

Price (Fisk): FTY, little hop.

Marcus (Brown) BHS LOSO nailed. Punch front with a little step back. Falls, congrats Air Force.

Jones (LU): Nailed her combo pass, switch to tour jete full!! On and a half front lay, lovely control. Great.

Contello (Brown): Front aerial, shaky but made, full turn, gainer pike way short with a big hop forward.

Xing (Brown): BHS back pike-out, steady. Beat to LOSO aggressive. Split to straddle quarter. Getting through fast and not doubting her landings. Full turn, double full with a step forward.

Griswold (LU): Double pike, scoot back. Precise leap rotation, nice double back to finish.

Michelini (CU): Full turn, check, BHS LOSO, switch switch half with a foot adjustment. Side aerial, split to beat, getting through steadily, punch front full deep but stuck.

Quiana (CU): Beat to BHS LOSO so dynamic, front aerial with a check.

DeMeo (CU): Front double full (we’re on floor now): Wolf 3/2 to wolf full, surprisingly not that crazy. One and a half front lay with soft knees, switch ring with front leg way too low.

FINAL: I don’t know, it’s been 20 minutes since these live scores updated

  1. Lindenwood 195.625
  2. Air Force 193.850
  3. Brown 193.075
  4. SCSU 192.850

Brown gave it away on beam at the end there. Disappointing finish after leading all meet, but should have a nice pack of EF qualifiers.

I’d love to tell you who those qualifiers are, but I actually can’t, so sorry about that. I’ll tweet them when I know them.

READ THIS NEXT: USAG Nationals Preview

Live blog by Rebecca Scally

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