|Photo Credit: Christy Linder|
Jazmyn Foberg- Floor (14.4)
Jazzy concluded a strong day of competition with this incredible floor routine! I was so excited watching this live because she absolutely nailed the first 2 passes! Of course, her recently added double layout was gorgeous as ever and it was nice to see her loosen up and crack a smile after that second pass. She had an outstanding day overall, as one of the only top competitors to hit 4 for 4. I tweeted something earlier during the broadcast that I wanted to mention on here. Last year Jazzy failed to qualify to nationals after a rough meet at the Secret Classic and here she is today...the leader after day 1! So proud of how she performed on every event today and I hope she can keep it up on day 2.
Nia Dennis- Vault (15.1)
This vault is huge! Although Nia had a bit of a rough day, this vault was definitely the highlight for her (and the highest score of the day!). She gets pretty good height and of course the stick is always a nice little bonus. I'm looking forward to seeing an amanar from Nia in the near future because she certainly has the power to get one around. Nia currently sits in 3rd place with 2 falls already under her belt. Hopefully on day 2 she can turn things around with a stronger performance on bars and beam...where she's capable of scoring much higher!
Sydney Johnson Scharpf- Beam (14.2)
What impressed me the most about this routine is how confident Sydney presents herself. She's one of the only juniors who can take her eyes off the beam and play to the audience a bit (it was much more apparent in the live stream but she made eye contact with the judges and it was super fierce!). Sydney has really improved on this event and she's much more consistent then in the past. If Sydney can stay on during day 2, she's looking at a possible top 8 finish (maybe even higher!)
Ragan Smith- Floor (14.5)
Fresh off claiming the floor title at the Secret Classic, Ragan looked even better on day 1 of competition. Her landings (while not perfect), where much more solid! Not to mention her dance was cuter than ever! Ragan currently holds the highest score on floor, so with one more solid routine that national title could easily be hers! I know winning floor was her goal, so I'd love to see it happen!
Simone Biles- Beam (15.7)
A 15.7 on beam?? That is absolutely insane. While this beam routine wasn't perfect, Simone was still pretty solid and made everything look easy. Typical Simone. This was her first event of the day and it certainly set her up for a strong all around performance. She'll look to clean up some of the wobbles and missed connections for day 2. Right now, Simone has a comfortable lead over the other competitors. As long as she doesn't implode, you're looking at the 2014 National Champion!
Ashton Locklear- Bars (15.850)
Ashton is really making a strong case for her spot on the worlds team this year! She doesn't have any international experience, but wow is this routine incredible! Ashton has beautiful lines on this event and really floats on her releases. It's beautiful! My mouth literally hung open as I watched this. It kinda makes you wonder, is this routine too good for Marta to pass up? USA could use this routine
Brenna Dowell- Bars (15.4)
Brenna looked so thrilled after this routine and I know I was too! This was exactly what she needed to do in order to prove her case for the worlds team. She can still use a little bit of fine tuning on this event but the fact that she put all her connections together is so exciting! This routine is jam packed with difficulty and I can definitely see if on the world stage if she keeps improving. Certainly one of the highlights of my night was watching her nail this routine! I hope she can do an even stronger routine on day 2!