The women’s competition at the U.S. Olympic Trials wrapped up in dramatic fashion on Sunday night, with the selection committee ultimately opting to take the top five all-arounders based on the two-day ranking, staying committed to the “transparency” and “fairness” that has guided team selection all quad.
The event’s two automatic qualifiers based on their first- and second-place finishes, 2016 Olympic champion Simone Biles and 2019 world champion Sunisa Lee, were joined by the third- and fourth-best athletes, Jordan Chiles, who last represented the United States at the Pacific Rim Championships in 2018, and Grace McCallum, a member of the gold medal-winning 2018 and 2019 world championships teams.
MyKayla Skinner, who was in fourth place following the first night of competition, missed out on maintaining that spot by just three tenths, but with her fifth-place finish, she was rewarded with the individual berth, which the U.S. earned by finishing in the top three in qualifications at world championships. The 2014 world silver medalist on vault and an alternate for the 2016 Olympic Games, Skinner plans on competing all four events at qualifications in Tokyo, with vault her most likely final.
But she’ll have big competition getting into that final both from Biles and from Jade Carey, the 2017 and 2019 world silver medalist on the event. Carey, who competed in the all-around on night one of trials but stuck to bars and beam to give her ankle a rest on night two, earned her nominative berth to the Olympic Games via the apparatus world cups, which concluded over the weekend, but she was celebrated with the newly-named members of Team USA at trials.
The alternates also earned their spots based on rank order, with those finishing sixth through ninth in the all-around – Kayla DiCello, Kara Eaker, Leanne Wong, and Emma Malabuyo – all accepting reserve spots. These athletes will train with the team in Japan, but must return home 24 hours prior to the competition beginning.
Most notably missing out on an Olympics berth was Riley McCusker, who was hoping to earn a spot for her work on the uneven bars. While she was being seriously considered after her performance on night one, a fall on night two kept her from factoring into the final decision.
The U.S. men’s team was named on Saturday, with Brody Malone, Yul Moldauer, Sam Mikulak, and Shane Wiskus named to the team, while Alec Yoder was awarded the individual berth. Brandon Briones, Allan Bower, Akash Modi, Cameron Bock, and Alex Diab are the reserves.
Article by Lauren Hopkins