Today’s finals competition at the Roberto Clemente Coliseum in San Juan, Puerto Rico, included men’s floor exercise, still rings, and pommel horse and women’s vault and uneven bars. U.S. athletes competing in tonight’s competition were Chris LaMorte from Long Island, N.Y., Jaycie Phelps of Greenfield, Ind., and Dominique Dawes of Silver Spring, Md. LaMorte performed on still rings and Phelps and Dawes performed on uneven bars.

LaMorte, although a little shaky, competed a clean set but didn’t stick his landing, which is essential. He scored a 9.687 placing him seventh, however, his competition included four-time World Championships gold medalist, Yuri Chechi of Italy, ’95 World Championships bronze medalist, Dan Burnica of Romania, and ’93 World Championships bronze medalist Ivan Ivankov of Belarus. “I felt good about my set and I was only one-tenth from second place. I didn’t have anything to lose, my goal was to make finals, and I did, besides, I don’t usually stick my landing at home so it wasn’t anything different than usual,” said LaMorte.
Phelps competed a beautiful set but also took an extra step on her landing, undoubtedly costing her the .063 she needed to finish with the bronze. Phelps placed eighth with a 9.712. “I am happy. I came here to get a reputation with the international judges and I think they know now, who I am, and that I am a consistent gymnast.”
Dawes, unfortunately, was just not on. She had three noticeable mistakes, one in which she stopped on the high bar. These resulted in her 11th place finish with a score of 8.787. Kelli Hill, Dawes’ coach said, “It must have been a fluke. She has been training this routine very hard and hit it during warm-ups.” Phelps and Dawes were up against ’94 World Medalist and defending World Champion on bars, Svetlana Chorkina of Russia. She is now the 1996 Uneven Bars World Champion.

Men’s Medalists

1/Vitaly Scherbo/BLR/9.787
2/Alexei Voropaev/RUS/9.700
3/Grigory Misutin/UKR/9.625

1/Gil Su Pae/PRK/9.825
2/Donghua Li/SUI/9.812
3/Alexei Nemov/RUS/9.787

1/Yuri Chechi/ITA/9.825
2/Jordan Jovtchev/BUL/9.737
2/Szilveszter Csollany/HUN/9.737

Women’s Medalists

1/Gina Gogean/ROM/9.800
2/Simona Amanar/ROM/9.787
3/Annia Portuondo/CUB/9.756

1/Svetlana Chorkina/RUS/9.787
1/Yelena Piskun/BLR/9.787
3/Isabelle Severino/FRA/9.775

Tomorrow’s finals include women’s balance beam and floor exercise and men’s parallel bars, vault and high bar. Phelps and Dawes will compete on beam and Chainey Umphrey will compete on high bar. The competition begins at 6:00 P.M.