© John Cheng

HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill., March 3, 2018 – Region 3 claimed the team title at the 2018 Elite Team Cup at Sears Centre Arena in Hoffman Estates, Ill. The event featured nine men’s Regional Teams, each consisting of six junior elite gymnasts.

Region 3 won the Cup with a 319.000 team total. Region 1 finished second, posting a 312.600, followed by Region 6 in third at 312.250. The Elite Team Cup members for each region are listed below.

  1. Region 3: Laz Barnhill, Houston, Texas/Cypress Academy of Gymnastics; John Chou, Cypress, Texas/Cypress Academy of Gymnastics; Ian Gunther, Houston, Texas/Cypress Academy of Gymnastics; Khalil Jackson, Katy, Texas/Champions Gymnastics; Evan Davis, Houston, Texas/Cypress Academy; and Colt Walker, Cedar Park, Texas/AcroTex Gymnastics. Team event scores – floor exercise, 51.400; pommel horse, 51.700 (1); still rings, 53.150 (1); vault, 57.200; parallel bars, 53.950 (1) ; and horizontal bar, 51.600 (1)
  2. Region 1: Jeremy Bischoff, Canyon Country, Calif./Wallers GymJam Academy; Brandon Briones, Gilbert, Ariz./Aspire Kids Sports Center; Riley Loos, El Dorado Hills, Calif./Technique Gymnastics; Brandon Nguyen, Elk Grove, Calif./Elevate Gymnastics Academy; Samuel Phillips, Woodland Hills, Calif./Gymnastics Olympica USA; and Blake Wilson, Temecula, Calif./SCEGA Gymnastics. Team event scores – floor exercise, 53.700 (1); pommel horse, 48.100; still rings, 52.400; vault, 57.200; parallel bars, 50.550; and horizontal bar, 50.650.
  3. Region 6: Matthew Cormier, Cheshire, Conn./Massachusetts Elite Gymnastics Academy; Liam Doherty-Herwitz, Bedford, Mass./Brestyan’s American Gymnastics; Michael Fletcher, Nashua, N.H./New England Academy of Gymnastics; Jakob Murray, Manchester, N.H./Granite State Gymnastic & Fitness; Antonio Sacchiero, Hudson, Mass./New England Academy of Gymnastics; and Luke Smigliani, Hanover, Mass./Ellis School of Gymnastics. Team event scores – floor exercise, 51.950; pommel horse, 49.500; still rings, 51.500; vault, 56.300; parallel bars, 52.900; and horizontal bar, 50.100.

Team scores for the Elite Team Cup were based on five athletes competing on each event with the top four scores on each event counting. The event was first held in conjunction with American Cup in 2016 in Newark, which also hosted the 2017 edition.

For men’s gymnastics, USA Gymnastics has nine regions, and the states that comprise each region are: Region 1 — Arizona, Hawaii, California, Nevada; Region 2 – Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington; Region 3 – Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas; Region 4 – Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin; Region 5 – Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio; Region 6 – Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont; Region 7 – Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia; Region 8 – Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee; Region 9 – Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming.

Background information


  • American Cup. 2017 U.S. all-around champion Ragan Smith of Lewisville, Texas/Texas Dreams, and Moldauer won the women’s and men’s titles at the 2017 American Cup at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. The impressive list of former American Cup champions includes: Simone Biles, Bart Conner, Tim Daggett, Gabby Douglas, Paul Hamm, Jonathan Horton, Shawn Johnson, Danell Leyva, Nastia Liukin, Sam Mikulak, Shannon Miller, Carly Patterson, Mary Lou Retton, Kurt Thomas, Peter Vidmar, Jordyn Wieber and Kim Zmeskal-Burdette. Past sites for the American Cup include: New York, N.Y. (1976-80, 1982-84, 2004, 2008, 2012); Ft. Worth, Texas (1981, 1996-98); Indianapolis, Ind. (1985); Fairfax, Va. (1986-90, 2003); Orlando, Fla. (1991-94, 2000-02); Seattle, Wash. (1995); St. Petersburg, Fla. (1999); Uniondale, N.Y. (2005); Philadelphia, Pa. (2006); Jacksonville, Fla. (2007, 2011); Hoffman Estates, Ill. (2009); Worcester, Mass. (2010, 2013); Greensboro, N.C. (2014); Arlington, Texas (2015); and Newark, N.J. (2016-17).
  • Nastia Liukin Cup. The 36 participants in the Nastia Liukin Cup are selected through the Nastia Liukin Cup Series, which features many of the country’s top gymnastics invitationals held throughout the United States. A total of 18 junior and 18 senior gymnasts advance to the Nastia Liukin Cup. Senior athletes must be 16 years of age or older, and junior athletes must be 15 or younger. Gymnasts who compete in the Nastia Liukin Cup receive a Nastia Liukin-designed leotard and a warm-up from GK Elite; two tickets to the Nastia Liukin Cup; and the opportunity to meet Liukin and participate in a team photo. The Nastia Liukin Cup is named after Nastia Liukin, the 2008 Olympic all-around champion who has five Olympic and nine World medals to her credit. The annual event is held the night before the American Cup and made its debut in 2010. Past sites include 2016 and 2017, Newark, N.J.; 2015, Arlington, Texas; 2014, Greensboro, N.C.; 2013 and 2010, Worcester, Mass.; 2012, New York City; and 2011, Jacksonville, Fla.
  • Elite Team Cup. The Elite Team Cup features nine men’s Regional Teams. The country’s best junior elite male gymnasts compete, representing their respective regions. The junior elite gymnasts must be between 13-18 years of age as of May. 31, 2018, and will be selected from the Regional Elite Team Program. The junior elite gymnasts will follow the USA Gymnastics/International Gymnastics Federation competition rules. The event was first held in 2016 in Newark, which also hosted the 2017 edition.
  • International Gymnastics Federation. The International Gymnastics Federation is the governing body for Gymnastics worldwide. It is the oldest established international federation of an Olympic sport and has participated in the Olympic Games since their revival in 1896. The FIG governs eight sports: gymnastics for all, men’s and women’s artistic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, trampoline – including double mini-trampoline and tumbling -, aerobics, acrobatics, and parkour. It counts 148 national member federations and has its headquarters in the Olympic capital of Lausanne, Switzerland.
  • Sears Centre Arena. Sears Centre Arena is an 11,000-seat multipurpose family entertainment, cultural, and sports arena located in Hoffman Estates’ Prairie Stone Business Park. The Sears Centre Arena, which opened in 2006, is designed to accommodate a variety of events including concerts, family shows and sporting events. For more information regarding the Sears Centre Arena and upcoming events, please visit the arena’s website at www.searscentre.com.
  • USA Gymnastics. Based in Indianapolis, USA Gymnastics is the national governing body for gymnastics in the United States. Its mission is to encourage participation and the pursuit of excellence in the sport. Its 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 www.usagym.org.