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Women's Gymnasts of the Week – Jan. 9-15, 2023

Big Ten Conference

Gymnast of the Week
Abby Heiskell – Michigan

  • Collected a pair of event titles to help the Wolverines become the first team in the nation this season to post a score of 198.000 or higher, as they scored a 198.125 to earn victories over No. 9 Denver and Fisk in a tri-meet on Jan. 13 at Crisler Center
  • Finished at the top of the podium on floor (9.950) and shared the all-around title with a total of 39.600
  • Tied for second on bars (9.900), fifth on beam (9.850) and sixth on vault (9.900) to secure the program’s first score of 198.000 or better at Crisler Center and the eighth in program history
  • The Academic All-Big Ten honoree earns her first career Big Ten Gymnast of the Week award

Event Specialist of the Week
Natalie Wojcik – Michigan

  • Earned wins on uneven bars and balance beam, helping Michigan to wins against No. 9 Denver and Fisk on Jan. 13 at Crisler Center
  • Tied her career best of 9.975 on bars for the second straight week and posted a 9.950 on the beam to win the event outright by 0.075
  • Added a 9.900 on vault to tie for sixth and help the Wolverines become the first team in the nation this season to post a score of 198.000 or higher
  • The three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree collects her fourth career Big Ten Event Specialist of the Week honor and her second in as many weeks

Freshman of the Week
Seria Johnson – Minnesota

  • Set new career highs in two events to help the Gophers post a team score of 196.325 at the Wasatch Classic on Jan. 14 in West Valley, Utah
  • Posted a 9.825 on vault, a 9.750 on bars, 9.875 on beam, a 9.900 on floor and a total of 39.350 in the all-around
  • The newcomer has competed in at least three events for the Gophers in each of their first two competitions
  • Earns her first Big Ten Freshman of the Week honor

Big 12 Conference

Gymnast of the Week
Rosie Casali – Denver
Casali helped Denver post a school-record 49.550 team score on vault as she received a 9.975. During her routine, she stuck her upgraded Yurchenko 1.5 for the first time in her college career, which took the individual title in the event. Competing against No. 4 Michigan and Fisk, her score was the highest in both the meet and the highest of all Big 12 gymnasts in any event during week two. She also tied her season-opening score of 9.850 in bars and floor. This is the first weekly honor for the junior.

Specialist of the Week
Katherine LeVasseur – Oklahoma
LeVasseur received her third career weekly honor after she cleared a Yurchenko 1.5 and earned a 9.925 to tie for first in the event at No. 13 LSU. The San Antonio native holds a season average of 9.912 in vault and ranks second in the Big 12 in the event. The No. 1 Oklahoma team scored 197.600 points to earn its first win at LSU (197.450) since 2006.

Newcomer of the Week
Mila Brusch – Denver
In her second collegiate meet, Brusch hit a career-high 9.850 in vault. Her score helped Denver reach a record-high 49.550, which was also the highest vault score from Big 12 teams this week. The freshman’s score helped then-ranked No. 9 Denver post a 197.200. Brusch is the first to receive the Newcomer award for Denver since the 2021 season.

East Atlantic Gymnastics League

Gymnast of the Week
Julia Knower – North Carolina
Knower earned her first all around title of the season and the fifth in her career with a 39.450, a new career best and No. 8 in North Carolina school history. The sophomore also set new career bests on bars (9.850) and floor (9.925). In addition, the Mandeville, La. native finished in the top three in all four events: first on beam (9.875) and floor (9.925) and third on vault (9.800) and bars (9.850).

Specialist of the Week
Lali Dekanoidze – North Carolina
Dekanoidze posted an impressive 9.975 on bars, becoming North Carolina’s outright program record holder on that event and winning the event by 0.100. The sophomore also placed first on vault with a personal best 9.900.

Rookie of the Week
Isabella Minervini – Towson
Minervini placed second overall on bars with a 9.900. This is the sixth-highest bars score in school history. The freshman also performed a non-counting exhibition routine on floor, earning a 9.825, which would have been Towson’s second highest score on that event and would have placed fifth overall.

Gymnastics East Conference

Gymnast of the Week
Skyelar Kerico – Penn
Skyelar Kerico, hit 4/4 routines for the second weekend in a row, tallying a 39.075 and placing 2nd amongst a strong competition at Penn State with LIU and SCSU. Her stuck 9.85 vault this past weekend tied for 1st and helped the team tie the 3rd highest vault score in program history. She is also currently ranked #1 in the GEC on beam as well as the all-around. Kerico has already proven to be a fierce and reliable competitor for the Quakers, helping contribute to the 6th highest overall team score in program history this past weekend.

Specialist of the Week
Julia Bedell – Brown
Bedell returns to the Brown Bears with a strong start to the season. Julia won both of the events that she competed in, setting a new career-high on vault at 9.850 in Brown’s dual meet at Yale and powered the Bears to their highest season-opening score since 2017. Her efforts on the floor led to a first place 9.7.

Newcomer of the Week
Asta Farrell – Brown
Competing in her first-ever collegiate event, Farrell had a strong performance (9.850) and took first place on bars in Brown’s dual meet at Yale. Her win helped power Brown to its highest season-opening score since 2017. Her freshman season was canceled due to the pandemic and she missed all of last year due to a preseason knee injury.

Mid American Conference

Gymnast of the Week
Victoria Henry – Ball State
Henry turned in the MAC’s top all-around score last week with a career-best 39.175 to tie for first overall at the Rutgers quad meet. The effort, which ties as the 12th-best score in program history, included a 9.825 on both bars and floor, a 9.775 on vault, and a career-best 9.750 on beam in just her second career appearance on the apparatus.

Specialist of the Week
Alyssa Al-Ashari – Northern Illinois
Alyssa Al-Ashari placed first on both uneven parallel bars and balance beam versus Iowa State in Des Moines on Saturday. She scored a career high 9.900 on bars to take first on the event and record one of just two scores of 9.9 or higher in the meet and the only 9.9 on bars in the MAC on the weekend. She closed out the meet with a 9.875 on beam to tie for first and record her highest score of the young season on beam. That score also tied for the highest score on beam in the league on the weekend.

Midwest Independent Conference

Gymnast of the Week
Hannah Appleget – Lindenwood
Appleget received a stellar 9.850 score for her beam performance at the Illinois State dual, which won her the overall beam title at the meet. The Mays Landing, New Jersey native also tied for the highest-score of Lindenwood’s floor lineup with her 9.750 along with teammates Sydney Lopez and Jaly Jones. Another noteworthy piece of Appleget’s performance was her uneven bars routine, which earned her a 9.850, the second-best score for the Lions in the event. The Lindenwood bars lineup had their strongest showing of the year so far with their 49.050, setting the tone for the entire meet from the get go.

Performance of the Week
Jaye Mack – Illinois State
Mack was the closer on floor for the Redbirds in their meets against Lindenwood and Western Michigan. Not only did she put together a pair of top three finishes on vault, including tying for first in the win over Western Michigan, Mack also won twice on the floor for the Redbirds including her season-best score of 9.875 on Friday against Lindenwood. That score is tied for the top score on the event in the MIC this season and is tied for the highest individual score in any event so far in 2023. Her score of 9.850 on Sunday also secured the win for the Redbirds over Western Michigan.

Newcomer of the Week
Nirel Bart-Williams – Illinois State
Bart-Williams put together two more strong all-around performances in the second weekend of competition for Illinois State, as the Redbirds took on Lindenwood and Western Michigan at home. Bart-Williams finished in third place in the all-around twice over the weekend and was the top finisher for the Redbirds all-around in Sunday’s win over Western Michigan. She tied for first place on vault in both meets with matching scores of 9.825 and had a pair of second-place finishes on floor over the weekend as well. Her score of 38.575 against Western Michigan tied her career-best and is currently the third-best all-around score in the MIC.

Coaches’ Choice Award
Lindsey Moffitt – SEMO
Moffitt, a Ferris, Texas-native, competed in three events this past weekend for the Redhawks registering a 9.475 on the Bars, a 9.650 on Beam, and a 9.700 floor routine to help lead SEMO to a victory over Greenville and MIC-member Centenary.

Mountain Pacific Sports Federation

Gymnast of the Week
Lauren Macpherson – San Jose State
San Jose State junior Lauren Macpherson (Gilbert, AZ) tied her career-best all-around with a winning 39.325 total, posting four solid scores with a 9.850 on the balance beam and floor, 9.825 on bars (T-3rd), and 9.800 on vault (T-3rd) in the season opener at No. 18 Stanford (Jan. 14). She helped the Spartans equal the 23rd-best all-time total in the MPSF and second-best opening-meet score in school history with 195.850. The beam team totaled 49.150, sixth-best in school history and tied for 14th in the MPSF record book. This is the sixth career MPSF weekly award for Macpherson.

Specialist of the Week
Emma Milne – San Jose State
San Jose State senior Emma Milne (Barrie, Ontario, Canada) shared second-place on the beam with a 9.875 in the season opener at No. 18 Stanford (Jan.14), helping the Spartans total 49.150 in the event, sixth-best in school history and tied for 14th in the MPSF record book. She also scored a 9.80 on the bars. This is the ninth career MPSF weekly award for Milne.

Freshman of the Week
Kyra Cato – San Jose State
San Jose State freshman Kyra Cato (Calgary, Canada) recorded a 9.80 on the balance beam in her collegiate debut at No. 18 Stanford (Jan. 14), helping the Spartans total 49.150 in the event, sixth-best in school history and tied for 14th in the MPSF record book. Cato added a 9.700 on vault and 9.650 on floor to help the Spartans equal the 23rd-best all-time total in the MPSF and second-best opening-meet score in school history with 195.850. This is Cato’s first career MPSF honor.

Mountain Rim Gymnastics Championship

Gymnast of the Week
Karley McClain – Southern Utah
McClain recorded her second-straight MRGC Gymnast of the Week honor after logging a 39.475 in the all-around in the Thunderbirds’ 196.100-192.875 victory over New Hampshire earlier in the week. McClain continues to bolster the efforts of the Flippin’ Birds by putting up exemplary scores in every event. She has already scored 9.900 or above three times this season and doesn’t seem to be slowing down. McClain scored a 9.900 on both the floor and bars in the home opener for the Thunderbirds against the University of New Hampshire.

Specialists of the Week
Vault – Emily Lopez, Boise State
Uneven Bars – Emily Lopez, Boise State
Balance Beam – Emily Lopez, Boise State; Sofi Sullivan, Utah State
Floor Exercise – Karley McClain, Southern Utah

National Collegiate Gymnastics Association - East

All-Around Gymnast of the Week
Kelsey Gates – Rhode Island College
Kelsey had her second highest score in the All Around at her first meet. She stayed very consistent on all four events. Leading the team and starting of the meet with a great attitude and performance. She was a leader all competition having a great ending on beam and Floor. She had one of the biggest challenge on her beam dismount and managed very good to stay calm and confident finishing with a 9.5. Ending the Line up on floor with a strong 9.75 I would love to nominate Kelsey as an All Around of the week for such an amazing performance at our first meet.

Specialist of the Week
Lindsey Thornton – Ursinus
We are 2 weeks away from the 1 year anniversary of Lindsey’s achielles rupture during FX touch at WCU last season (1/29/22). She made her INCREDIBLE comeback this past weekend at our opener victory at Cortland on beam scoring a 9.55- A career high, the team’s highest BB score and 2nd in yesterdays dual. WHAT A RETURN, as a senior!

Pac-12 Conference

Gymnast of the Week
Jade Carey – Oregon State

  • The Olympic Gold Medalist posted 10s on both the floor and the vault, guiding the Beavers to a second-place finish in the night session of the Wasatch Classic at the Maverik Center in Salt Lake City.
  • Became just the second Oregon State gymnast all-time to record a pair of perfect scores in a meet and the first to do it since 1993 (Chari Knight).
  • In addition to winning the floor and vault events, the sophomore took the all-around title with a 39.775, which ranks as the second-highest all-around score in the nation this season.
  • The perfect 10 on the floor was the third of her collegiate career, while the 10 on the vault was her first.
  • Has now won 50 individual events titles in her career and holds the top six all-around scores in Beaver history.
  • This is her fourth career Gymnast of the Week honor after she earned three as a freshman in 2022.

Specialist of the Week
Kara Eaker – Utah

  • Became one of only four gymnasts in the NCAA and the only Pac-12 gymnast to earn a perfect 10 on the beam this season.
  • It was the sophomore’s first 10.0 on beam this year and second of her career.
  • Has posted two perfect 10s on beam in just nine career beam routines and is just one of eight Utes in program history to record at least two 10s in the event.
  • Her performance highlighted a beam rotation for Utah that scored a nation-best 49.675 and ranks No. 1 in the nation through the first two weeks.
  • First career weekly award for Eaker.

Freshman/Newcomer of the Week
Selena Harris – UCLA

  • Earns award for second straight week after finishing in the top two of every event and tying for first in the all-around in the afternoon session of the Wasatch Classic at the Maverik Center in Salt Lake City, helping the No. 4 Bruins to their first win of the season.
  • Her all-around score of 39.725 is tied for the fourth-highest score in the nation this year.
  • Won the uneven bars event with a near-perfect 9.975, tied for first on beam with a 9.925 and placed second on the vault (9.9) and the floor (9.925).
  • Helped the Bruins capture season-high scores on the bars (49.5), beam (49.5) and the floor (49.6) as UCLA posted its highest total away from Pauley Pavilion since 2019.
  • Has scored 9.9 or better on seven of her eight routines this season and ranks sixth in the country in the all-around.

Coaches’ Choice
Ira Alexeeva – Stanford

  • Made her collegiate debut after missing her freshman year due to having 90 bone chips removed from her hip and taking a leave of absence in the middle of her sophomore year to continue to recover.
  • In her first collegiate event, scored a 9.85 on beam to tie for fourth.
  • Scored a 9.875 on bars to place second in the event.
  • Helped No. 18 Stanford best San Jose State in its first dual meet of the year (196.100 – 195.850).

Southeastern Conference

Gymnast of the Week
Leanne Wong – Florida
Wong, a sophomore from Overland Park, Kan., helped the Gators in the win over No. 5 Auburn with the nation’s top all-around this season of 39.825, her fourth all-around win as a Gator. Wong became the first gymnast in the nation to post a pair of 10.0 in a single meet with her scores on uneven bars and balance beam. She set or equaled her three collegiate bests on bars, beam and floor (9.975). Wong was the first in the nation with an uneven bars 10.0 for the second consecutive season, while her perfect mark for beam was the first of her Gator career. She equaled her collegiate floor best (9.975) for third time of Gator career to take second.

Specialist of the Week
Kayla DiCello – Florida
DiCello, a freshman from Boyds, Md., set or equaled her collegiate bests in each of the three events she competed in during the win over No. 5 Auburn. DiCello earned a share of second place on both vault (9.90) and balance beam (9.925), both setting collegiate bests. She also equaled her collegiate best on uneven bars (9.925) to take third place.

Freshman of the Week
Gabby Gladieux – Alabama
Gladieux, a freshman from Greensboro, N.C., captured a pair of second-place finishes to help her squad earn the win at No. 16 Arkansas. Gladieux posted scores of 9.875 on both balance beam and floor, tying for the highest score in UA’s lineup in both lineups to earn a share of second place. She also recorded a 9.725 on vault for the Crimson Tide.

Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (NCGA West)

Kiara Brown – UW-Stout
Brown (Jr., Whitewood, S.D./Sturgis) opened the 2023 season with a pair of all-around wins. Her all-around score of 38.000 at the Winona State Triangular on Jan. 13, was a personal best. In a dual against UW-Eau Claire on Jan. 10, Brown won the uneven bars with a score of 9.500, tied for first in the vault with a score of 9.400 and placed second on the balance beam with a score of 9.575 to claim the all-around (37.575). At Winona, Brown placed third overall in the uneven bars (9.625) and fourth in the vault (9.500).

Breanna McGibboney – UW-Oshkosh
McGibboney (Fr., Chester Springs, Pa./Downingtown East) was the top Division III finisher in the vault at the Rutgers University (N.J.) January Meet on Jan. 14. She earned a score of 9.825, tying for third place. It was the highest finish for the Titans at the meet. She also scored a 9.550 on the floor exercise.