© Trend News Agency

BAKU, Azerbaijan, April 29, 2018 – 2016 Olympian Laura Zeng of Libertyville, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, won the hoop bronze medal and placed fifth in the all-around at the rhythmic World Cup in Baku, Azerbaijan. The event is part of the International Gymnastics Federation’s rhythmic gymnastics World Cup series.

In the hoop final, Zeng’s 17.350 clinched the bronze medal, which is the fifth career World Cup medal for the three-time U.S. Champion. She is the only U.S. competitor ever to win rhythmic medals in a World Cup series. Russia’s Mariia Sergeeva took the hoop title with her 18.200, and Katsiaryna Halkina of Belarus placed second at 17.750. Sergeeva also won the gold medal in ribbon with a 16.800.

Zeng placed fifth in the clubs final, scoring a 16.450. Ukraine’s Vlada Nikolchenko took top honors with her 18.100. Boryana Kaleyn of Bulgaria earned the silver with a 17.800, and the bronze went to Sergeeva (17.700).

For ball, Zeng’s 14.900 put her in eighth. Lili Mizuno of Brentwood, Calif./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics, also advanced to the ball final, where she finished seventh (15.200). Russia’s Ekaterina Selezneva claimed the title with an 18.200, followed by Sergeeva (18.100), and Japan’s Kaho Minagaw (17.950).

In the all-around final, Zeng placed fifth (64.550) with event scores of 17.050, hoop; 16.050, ball; 16.350, clubs; and 15.100, ribbon. Mizuno finished 15th with her 59.800 total: 15.500, hoop; 15.950, ball; 15.500, clubs; and 12.850, ribbon. Sergeeva’s 69.050 earned the title, while Nikolchenko (67.550) and Anastasiia Salos of Belarus (66.550) rounded out the medal’s podium.

USA placed 11th in the senior group competition. The U.S. senior rhythmic group, which trains at North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, includes Dasha Baltovick of Highland Park, Ill.; Isabelle Connor of Manhattan Beach, Calif.; Ugne Dragunas of Darien, Ill.; Connie Du of Deerfield, Ill.; Elizaveta Pletneva of Caldwell, N.J.; Nicole Sladkov of Vernon Hills, Ill.; and Kristina Sobolevskaya of Deerfield, Ill.