Zhou, Vandertoolen win all-around titles at 2018 GK Hopes Championships
posted on 07/27/2018

© John Cheng

COLUMBUS, Ohio, July 27, 2018 – Alicia Zhou of San Antonio, Texas/Love Gymnastics, and Lundyn Vandertoolen of Salt Lake City, Utah/Olympus Gymnastics, won the 10-11 and 12-13 year-old division all-around titles, respectively, at the GK Hopes Championships, which features young, aspiring female gymnasts who are just below the elite level, at the Schottenstein Center in Columbus, Ohio, The GK Hopes Championships, which has two age groups, 10-11 year-olds and 12-13 year-olds, is the culmination of the Hopes season.

For the 12-13 year-old division, Vandertoolen won the all-around title with a 51.350 total, as well as the uneven bars gold (13.250) and floor exercise bronze (12.550) medals. Skylar Draser of Huntington Station, N.Y./Infiniti Elite Gymnastics, claimed the all-around silver at 50.850, along with the floor gold (tie, 12.700) and uneven bars bronze (12.500). Amber Lowe of Kennesaw, Ga./Everest Gymnastics, rounded out the top three in the all-around with her 50.400 and added the bars silver medal (13.000) to her collection.

CJ Keuneke of Denver, Colo./TIGAR, earned the vault crown (13.650). Jaelah Warner of Suffolk, Va./World Class Gymnastics, and Jamison Sears of Yorktown, Va./World Class Gymnastics, tied for second with a 13.250. Sydney Jelen of Algonquin, Ill./Legacy Elite Gymnastics LLC, and Mya Witte of Greenacres, Fla./Genie’s Gymnastics, tied for the beam title at 13.200. Lily Pederson of White Bear Lake, Minn./Flips Gymnastics LLC, completed the medalists, finishing third (12.900). Ella Zirbes of Stillwater, Minn./Flips Gymnastics, tied with Draser for the floor exercise title (12.700).

Zhou claimed the 10-11 all-around gold medal with her 50.400. She went on to earn the balance beam title (13.200) and the silver for the vault (12.500) and uneven bars (12.659). Baylie Belman of Allen, Texas/WOGA Gymnastics, snared the all-around silver at 48.700, edging out Myli Lew of Belmont, Calif./San Mateo Gymnastics (48.500).

On vault, Zoey Molomo of Allen, Texas/Metroplex Gymnastics took the vault title at 12.900, and Michelle Pineda of Dallas, Texas/Metroplex Gymnastics, was third at 12.350, behind Zhou. The 10-11 uneven bars gold went to Lew, who posted a 12,800. Completing the top three is Autumn Reingold of North Hills, Calif./Gymnastics Olympica USA, at 12.600. Ava San Jose of Northridge, Calif./Paramount Elite Gymnastics, garnered the floor exercise gold (12.600), followed by Lew (12.500) and Hezly Rivera of North Bergen N.J./Eastern National Academy of Paramus (12.400). The silver and bronze beam medals went to Belman at 12.950 and Lucy Tobia of Schnecksville, Pa./Parkettes National Gymnastics Center, at 12.800, respectively.


On Saturday, the GK U.S. Classic, the last opportunity for female gymnasts to qualify for the 2018 U.S. Gymnastics Championships, the national championships for men’s and women’s gymnastics. Gymnasts who have already qualified to nationals use the GK U.S. Classic as a final tune-up for the U.S. Gymnastics Championships. The GK U.S. Classic has athletes competing on the junior level at 1:30 p.m. ET and the senior level at 7:30 p.m. ET.  

Single session tickets for the GK U.S. Classic on July 28 are $35-$45 for the junior session at 1:30 p.m. and $39-$59 for the senior session at 7:30 p.m. All times are Eastern and subject to change. Ticket prices vary according to competition session and seat location. Ticket prices listed here do not include applicable service charges. Tickets may be purchased at the Box Office, ticketmaster.com or charge by phone at 1-800-745-3000.

GK Elite, a long-time partner of USA Gymnastics, recently became the title sponsor for the GK U.S. Classic and the GK Hopes Championships. The Schottenstein Center, in partnership with the Greater Columbus Sports Commission, is playing host to the two events. Columbus has held the 2012 and 2016 post-Olympic tour, as well as the 1992 U.S. Championships.

Background information

  • GK – Elite Sportswear. Elite Sportswear is the combination of the worlds’ leading sports specialty apparel brands including, GK Gymnastics, Dreamlight Gymnastics, All Star Cheer, Omni Cheer and Dolfin Swimwear. Distributed in over 35 countries, Elite Sportswear products have been worn by Olympians and World champions for over 35 years. Employing over 500 people between two locations in Reading, Pa. and San Diego, Calif., Elite Sportswear continues its commitment to American-made quality and continuous innovation in designs with unprecedented fit, form and function. For more information about Elite Sportswear, visit www.gkelite.com.
  • Schottenstein Center. Located on the campus of The Ohio State University, the Schottenstein Center is a 770,000 square-foot multipurpose venue. Home to the men’s ice hockey and men’s and women’s basketball Buckeyes, it is the largest arena in the Big Ten. Averaging over 1 million guests per year, the building has hosted The Rolling Stones, Ohio High School Athletic Association state championships in wrestling and girls and boys basketball, The Frozen Four and the McDonald’s All-American basketball game amongst a variety of sporting and special events. A nationally recognized sports and entertainment center, the Schott continues a tradition of making memories.
  • Greater Columbus Sports Commission. Since 2002, the Greater Columbus Sports Commission has been a catalyst in transforming Columbus into one of the world’s best sports destinations, booking 427 new sporting events for the Columbus Region and generating an estimated $535 million in visitor spending. Our mission is to rally Columbus to compete and win sporting events, providing a singular athlete and fan experience and positively impacting our image, economy and lifestyle. For more information, visit columbussports.org.
  • USA Gymnastics. 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 empowers and supports its athletes and focuses on its highest priority, the safety and well-being of the athletes. USA Gymnastics has already taken specific, concrete steps to strengthen its safe sport policies and procedures. 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, log on to usagym.org.