Nearly 450 of the USA’s best Level 10 gymnasts will converge in Minneapolis, Minn., to compete in the 2013 Women’s U.S. Junior Olympic National Championships, May 10-11, at the Minneapolis Convention Center. Level 10 is the highest level in the Junior Olympic program, which is just under the elite level. The Junior Olympic National Invitational Tournament (NIT) is held on May 12, in conjunction with the Women’s Junior Olympic National Championships.
The field for the Junior Olympic National Championships boasts gymnasts from 39 states, with Texas and California bringing the two largest numbers of athletes at 47 and 35, respectively. The NIT field includes gymnasts from 36 states. A complete list of the athlete roster for both events, organized by state, is included below.
The Junior Olympic National Championships is the culmination event for the competitive season. The competition features eight age divisions (Junior A, Junior B, Junior C, Junior D, Senior A, Senior B, Senior C and Senior D), which are determined by birth date. These gymnasts are vying to become Junior Olympic national champions in the all-around, as well as in all four events: vault, uneven bars, balance beam and floor exercise.
The competition schedule is: May 10 – 11:30 a.m., Junior and Senior A, and 5 p.m., Junior and Senior B; and May 11 – 11:30 a.m., Junior and Senior C, and 5 p.m., Junior and Senior D. Champions are determined for each session. For more information on the championships, go to http://www.tctmeets.com/jonational.html.
USA Gymnastics has eight regions, and the top seven gymnasts from each region’s Regional Championships advance to nationals. The winning Regions will also be determined at the conclusion of the competition. The top four all-around athletes in each of the eight age division also qualify to the 2013 Junior Olympic National Team and are invited to attend a National Training Camp, scheduled for Sept. 22-26, at the USA Gymnastics National Team Training Center at the Karolyi Ranch, a U.S. Olympic Training Site, in Huntsville, Texas.
The U.S. Junior Olympic National Championships is one of the national championships of USA Gymnastics, the sport’s national governing body in the United States. Many Junior Olympic champions have gone on to make the U.S. National Team and represent the United States in international competition and/or to compete in collegiate gymnastics. Many of the country’s top gymnasts are former participants in the Junior Olympic program, including 2012 Olympic team champions Jordyn Wieber and Kyla Ross, 2009 World vault champion Kayla Williams, 2008 Olympic team silver-medalists Shawn Johnson and Samantha Peszek, and 2004 Olympic team silver-medalist Courtney McCool, to name a few.
The Junior Olympic NIT was developed to allow an additional 192 athletes an opportunity to compete at the national level and features gymnasts who ranked eighth and ninth in the all-around in each of the eight age divisions at the Level 10 Regional Championships (provided they achieved a minimum all-around score of 34.00), plus any regional individual event champions who did not qualify to the Junior Olympic National Championships or the NIT in the all-around. Competition is May 12 at the Minneapolis Convention Center.
The states that comprise each region are: Region 1 -- Arizona, California, Nevada, Utah; Region 2 – Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington; Region 3 – Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Wyoming; Region 4 – Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin; Region 5 – Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio; Region 6 – Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont; Region 7 – Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia; and Region 8 – Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee.
Twin City Twisters Gymnastics in Minneapolis is the local gymnastics club hosting the 2013 Junior Olympic National Championships.
For a full list of competitors, state by state, go to http://usagym.org/pages/post.html?PostID=12082&prog=w
About 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 group gymnastics. For more complete information, log on to www.usagym.org.