© John Cheng

PESARO, Italy, April 5, 2019 – Evita Griskenas of Orland Park, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, has qualified for both the hoop and ball event finals after the first of two days of event qualifications at the 2019 World Cup in Pesaro, Italy, at Adriatic Arena. Competition continues tomorrow with the final day of event qualifications and the all-around final for both individual and group rhythmic gymnastics.

In the hoop qualification, Griskenas was sixth at 20.600 and a trip to the finals. Lili Mizuno of Northbrook, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, earned a 16.550 for 42nd. For ball, Griskenas earned at 19.850 for eighth and a spot in the finals. Mizuno tallied a 19.300 for 13th. Russia’s Arina Averina posted the top scores for hoop (22.050) and ball (21.400). After two events, Griskenas is seventh in the all-around rankings with a 40.450, and Mizuno is 25th (35.850). Arina Averina and her twin Dina sit atop the rankings at 43.450 and 42.900, respectively. Bulgaria’s Kaleyn Boryana is third at this point at 41.500.

The U.S. group claimed a 22.250 for ninth out of 18 groups in the 5 balls qualifying round. They are the first reserve for the finals, after finishing ninth via a tie-breaker. Russia had the highest mark for 5 balls at 25.250.

The members of the U.S. group, which trains at North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, are: Isabelle Connor of Manhattan Beach, Calif.; Connie Du of Deerfield, Ill.; Yelyzaveta Merenzon of Buffalo Grove, Ill.; Elizaveta Pletneva of Deerfield, Ill.; Nicole Sladkov of Vernon Hills, Ill.; and Kristina Sobolevskaya of Chicago.

The competition schedule is: April 6, 12 p.m., all-around/clubs and ribbon, and 7:30 p.m., all-around/3hoops/2 pairs of clubs; and April 7, individual event finals – hoop and ball at 2:10 p.m., 5 balls at 3:15 p.m., clubs and ribbon at 4:05 p.m., and 3 hoops/2 pairs of clubs at 5:10 p.m. The all-around competition serves as the qualification round for event finals. All times listed are local to Pesaro, which is six hours ahead of U.S. Eastern time.

The event has live scoring, and more information is available on the event website. U.S.-based fans can follow the competition watch the event finals live on the Olympic Channel website and televised on the Olympic Channel at 5 p.m. ET, with a simulcast.

Based in Indianapolis, USA Gymnastics is the national governing body for gymnastics in the United States. The organization is committed to creating a culture that encourages and supports its athletes and focuses on its highest priority, the safety and well-being of the athletes. USA Gymnastics has taken specific, concrete steps to strengthen its safe sport policies and procedures. Former gymnast and business executive Li Li Leung is the new president and chief executive officer of USA Gymnastics. The organization’s disciplines include men’s and women’s artistic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, trampoline and tumbling, acrobatic gymnastics and gymnastics for all (formerly known as group gymnastics). For more complete information, visit usagym.org.