Top 20 Named to National Team

Day 2 of 4 of John Hancock U.S. Gymnastics Championships

SACRAMENTO, Calif.- Coming from behind in the final rotation, Kristen Maloney successfully defended her all-around title Thursday evening in the1999 John Hancock U.S. Gymnastics Championships at Arco Arena.

Maloney, 18, of Pen Argyl, Pa., scored 38.687 points to defeat Vanessa Atler for the second straight year. Atler, 17, of Canyon Country, Calif., fell in her final event, the uneven bars, and finished second with 38.312 points. Jennie Thompson, 16, of Cincinnati, finished third with 38.112 points.

1999 Senior National Team
The top 20 finishers in tonight’s competition secured a spot on the 1999 U.S. Senior National Team. As a National Team member, a gymnast may represent the United States in international competition during the 1999-2000 competitive season. 1999-2000 Team members include:

1. Kristen Maloney/Pen Argyl, Pa./Parkettes
2. Vanessa Atler/Canyon Country, Calif./Charter Oak Gliders
3. Jennie Thompson/Cincinnati, Ohio/Cincinnati Gymnastics
4. Alyssa Beckerman/Cincinnati, Ohio/Cincinnati Gymnastics
5. Jamie Dantzscher/Palmdale, Calif./Charter Oak Gliders
6. Elise Ray/Columbia, Md./Hill’s Gymnastics
7. Morgan White/Cincinnati, Ohio/Cincinnati Gymnastics
8. Robin Phelps/Rockville, Md./Hill’s Gymnastics
9. Tasha Schwikert/Las Vegas, Nev./Gym Cats
10. Stephanie Carter/Byrn Athyn, Pa./Ricochets
11. Marline Stephens/Houston, Texas/Brown’s
12. Mylan Dodd/Seattle, Wash./Cascade Elite
13. Erin Dooley/Gaithersburg, Md./Hill’s Gymnastics
14. Lindsey Wing/Huntsville, Ala./Hill’s Gymnastics
15. Annabeth Eberle/Reno, Nev./Starz
16. Monique Chang/Fairfax Station, Va./Capital Gymnastics
17. Carrie Nagle/Whitehall, Pa./Parkettes
18. Katie Hardman/Buda, Texas/National Elite
19. Marie Fjordholm/Frisco, Texas/World Olympic
20. Dana Pierce/Wexford, Pa./Wright’s Gymnastics

The top 14 finishers from the all-around competition advance to the 1999 World Team Trials Sept. 15-18, in Kansas City, Mo. The 1999 World Championships are Oct. 9-16 in Tiajnin, China.


Kristen Maloney, Pen Argyl, Penn.

On winning the all-around gold medal…
“I wasn’t expecting it…I was very nervous coming into the meet, but now I feel very confident going into World’s in September.”

On going into vault, her final event, knowing Atler had just fallen on bars…
“I knew that it was close, so I still had to do the best that I could. I just tried to calm myself and relax to feel like I am in my own gym.”

On expectations for the upcoming year…
“I will take it one meet at a time. I know everything will come if I just work hard, concentrate on my goals and have fun. I take everything as it comes.”

Vanessa Atler, Canyon Country, Calif
On respect for Kristen Maloney…
“Kristen and I have been friends for a long time. I think of her as a competitor, but we don’t have a rivalry.”

On falling on her bar routine…
“I went into this meet not as prepared as I could be. Also, there was pressure because I knew Kristen and I were so close in score. So, yes I did it again [fall on bars]. I just have to keep trying…of course I was thinking about it. I make it all the time in practice, but I feel like it is harder in meets. I need to get through this myself.”

On winning the silver…
“Obviously I was a little disappointed, but I am happy with silver.”

Expectations for World Team Trials and World Championships…
“I am a little nervous because I have been waiting for so long to compete at a World Championships. I have been trying to prepare mentally, and in the gym.”

Junior Competition
Kristal Uzelac,13, of Whitehall, Penn., won three of four event finals this afternoon in the junior women’s event finals and all-around preliminary competition. She took the gold medal on the floor, vault and beam events. Uzelac is in first place headed into Saturday’s all-around competition. She trains at Parkettes in Allentown, Penn.

Tabitha Yim,13, of Irvine, Calif. finished today’s competition in second overall. Yim trains at Charter Oaks Gliders.


Kristal Uzelac, 13, Whitehall, Penn.
On her performance…
“I thought I did very well. In practice some events weren’t going very well, but I just focused and I did what I had to do.”

On Saturday’s competition…
“I need to do what I did today. I just want to stay focused and have fun.”

On senior gymnasts she admires…
“I really like to watch Kristen Maloney, Vanessa Atler and Elise Ray.”

Tabitha Yim, 13, Irvine, Calif.
On her performance…
“I was hoping to hit four for four today as best I could. I did really well, but I could improve on floor…I’m really surprised because last year I finished in 22nd place, so it is a major improvement for me.”

Competition Schedule
Friday, August 27
7:00 p.m. Senior Men All-Around Finals

Saturday, August 28
1:00 p.m. Junior Women All-Around Finals
6:00 p.m. Senior Women Event Finals