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Douglas Wins U.S. Olympic Trials
(20 votes, average 4.10 out of 5)


Gabrielle Douglas dealt a defeat to world champion Jordyn Wieber on Sunday as the U.S. Olympic Gymnastics Trials concluded in San Jose.

Douglas and Wieber will head to London along with McKayla Maroney, Alexandra Raisman and Kyla Ross. Alternates are Sarah Finnegan, Anna Li and Elizabeth Price.

Douglas, who trailed Wieber going into the second day of competition, grabbed the lead early with a nearly stuck Amanar on vault. She had the top mark of the day on uneven bars with 15.90, and survived some shaky moments on balance beam. On the final event, she needed 15.201 to take first and earn the only guaranteed berth on the U.S. women's Olympic squad. She earned 15.300, electrifying the sold-out crowd at the HP Pavilion.

"Oh man, it just feels so awesome and just so great!" Douglas said with a grin. "I've been putting in so much effort in the gym every day and it's so nice to see all this hard work has finally all paid off. I just want to say thank my coaches Chow and Li. I just feel so blessed."

Wieber performed strongly, with her largest error some missed connections on balance beam. But she couldn't hold off the surging Douglas.

"I think the main thing for me will be cleaning up my beam routine and getting that more consistent in competition," Wieber said.

Raisman finished third ahead of Price, Ross, Finnegan and Maroney. Maroney, the heavy favorite to take the vault title in London, once again vaulted into the rafters. She had a large error on uneven bars and landed out of bounds on floor exercise, but had the routine of her life on balance beam.

The men's Olympic team was introduced to the crowd while the selection committee decided the outcome. The names of the gymnasts who made the team were announced right before they were sent out to be introduced to the crowd, tears streaming down their faces as they ran back into the arena.

"They announced it and then we had to go out so we were like getting hugs right as we were running out!" Ross laughed.

Though Wieber was a lock for the Olympic team, the moment still caught up with her. "I didn't know that I was going to cry so much but I'm just so happy to be part of this team," she said.

The drama also surrounded those who didn't make the squad. Reigning Olympic all-around champion Nastia Liukin fell on her Gienger on bars, but stood up her double front-half dismount. Teammate Rebecca Bross fell over the bar on her very first skill, a toe-on full. Clearly devastated, she remounted the bars only to peel off on her Maloney-half. Then she nearly fell over again on a handstand before scraping the mats with her legs on her Pak salto. Coach Valeri Liukin told her to salute and not continue. But both gymnasts rebounded on balance beam with brave efforts. Bross had hardly a wobble before standing up her inconsistent Patterson dismount. Liukin was nearly perfect, and received a standing ovation from the crowd in acknowledgement of what is likely her final competitive performance.

External Link: USA Gymnastics

Comments (31)add comment

Robin said:

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...
I have to say that I am pretty disappointed that Alicia Sacramone was not named one of the alternates. I guessed the 5 who would make the team, but I thought surely with Alicia's leadership, experience and consistency, she should be one of the alternates. Not that a gymnast should be named to the team solely because of experience (honestly, did the other 2008 Olympians stand much of a chance of making the team?), but I was really pulling for Alicia, especially after she had such a great recovery and hit her routines pretty well.

So far I'm not liking this new, five-person team format. It's too bad the number crunching forces federations to leave so many talented gymnasts at home.
 
July 02, 2012
Votes: +22

Noname said:

0
Sacramone
I loved Sacramone and wanted her to be on the team, but unfortunately her strengths just didn't fit in with the team. If she was good at bars, I think she'd be on the team. The fact is, we didn't need another beamer or a vaulter.
 
July 02, 2012
Votes: +11

mE said:

0
5 person
i do dislike the 5 person team. anna li and sarah finnegan deserve to show their ub and bb routines, respectively. and i was really routing for price to make the team. she did a helluva job! still curious to see why she got such low scores on beam.
 
July 02, 2012
Votes: +2
..., Low-rated comment [Show]

frankie68 said:

0
Sacramone
Sacramone should of been an alterante. YOu need to have one alternate that is a strong bar worker... Li and then one that is a good vaulter. Sacramone.. That way the team would of been covered for any injury that comes up. You would of has a Bar worker, al all arounder (Priess) and Vaulter. Sacramone.
 
July 02, 2012
Votes: -1

DowisK said:

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It was a shame that Alicia was left off the team, but she had a great trials and finished on a good note. I think they should just name her team captain, just like Canada did with injured Peng Peng Lee, however, I believe that just like Nastia, Alicia will make the trip to London as some sort of represenative or just as she has done before she will get coaching credentials through her club and go as a coach for Aly, but there is no doubt in my mind that Alicia will not be there one way or another.
 
July 02, 2012
Votes: +1

smithe80 said:

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I wonder if ASac declined an alternate the alternate spot and maybe that's why finnegan was selected. Alecia's definitely more consistent on beam.
 
July 02, 2012
Votes: +2

Anonymous said:

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I have to say that I'm not hugely impressed with this year's women's team. They had their fair share of wobbles last night, and a couple of them don't point their toes, detracting from their performance. I also think Alicia should have at least been an alternate.
 
July 02, 2012
Votes: -2
..., Low-rated comment [Show]

Rachel T said:

0
Price should have been in the top 5
Again, just my opinion. I feel Price should have been one of the five. She scored in the top five and should have been selected. Nothing against maroney, but price should have had her spot. Maroney was only selected because of her vault, but the United States is already strong on vault. The commentators themselves said price was the second best vaulter in the world and that should have been enough. Once again politics, politics, politics. Bill and Donna Strauss once again got an unfair hand with Price just like they did with poor Kim Kelly. Price scored in the top five and should be first string and not an alternate. It's all about winning and not about fairness, integrity, and plain just doing the right thing. As I have said before, this is a competition and there are no second chances at the Olympics. So why should the trials be any different? Price scored in the top 5 and should be in the top 5. I believe the selection committee was very unfair and all of these girls have worked so hard for this and the only fair way should be to go by the scores and the scores alone. The idea of apparatus specialists to me is a complete joke. Whoever initiated the cutting the gymnasts to 5 made a horrible mistake. It is not only a slap in the face to all these hard working gymnasts, but it hurts the sport in general. As with any sport, the spectators always have their favorites and now there are less on the playing field. Gymnastics may not be the most popular sport year round, but it definitey is the most popular sport at the Olympics even over track and field. So why have fewer gymnasts thereby making the competition shorter? Also, the biggest mistake in this sport was getting rid of compulsories because that is what truly sets the gymnasts apart and you can do true comparisons such as form and amplitude. Of course any gymnast is going to perform the skills they do best and completely avoid the ones they can't in their optional routines. The compulsories are a necessity not just an add on. The all around should be two nights with the first night being compulsories and the second night optionals and then the scores should be combined.
 
July 02, 2012
Votes: +18

anny said:

0
too bad there can't be more competitors
I don't understand why gymnastics can't have their teams set up the way the swimmers have their teams. In gymnastics, any event finalists have to be taken from the team competition. in swimming, it's almost the opposite. you can bring your best competitors in any given specialty (e.g. backstroke, butterfly) and then you can choose swimmers that you want to be in your relay. you can even choose a completely different medley/"all around" competitor. i think it'd be nice to see that in gymnastics: event specialists, a team made up of any five individuals (not necessarily the same competitors as the event specialists) and then an all around competitor.
 
July 02, 2012
Votes: -2

Butterfly said:

0
Well said
I couldn't have said it better Rachel T. Just about those exact words are what I said after watching last night. It is ashamed that we have adopted Marta and Belas political selection style that robs talent and fairness from our vocabulary.Price deserved to be on the team competing, not as an alternate. I guess the possibility of winning out ways what is right and wrong. Well, there was a shining light to it all. Gabby Rocked! Way to go! I hope she takes it London. My heart goes out to Bross and I applaud her for hanging in there. The men were awesome and I am cheering for them.
 
July 02, 2012 | url
Votes: +12

Alison Clements said:

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Well said Rachel T. In fact is there anybody here would like to make a case that:
- team of 5, 3 up, 3 count; and
- optionals only;
is a better format? Surely someone out there must think so, otherwise what on earth is the FIG doing if it's so out of step with public opinion.

Personally I believe (with the possible exception of the benefits brought by the age 16 requirement) the days of the late 1980s when the format was 7-6-5 (team of 7, 6 up, 5 count) and compulsories were a golden age.
 
July 03, 2012
Votes: +18

Margaret said:

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Maroney has consistently outscored Price on all events. Price only outscored her on bars and beam due to Maroney's falls. Maroney even outscored Wieber night 2 when she hit her beam set. Maroney is the reigning World Vault Champion. Price has no chance of a vault medal-she has no second vault. And unlike Price Maroney has been to a big time event before and international panel of judges-and scored very well.

The committee made the correct decision on all counts.
 
July 03, 2012
Votes: +0
Price, Low-rated comment [Show]

dragonair said:

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sacramone wasn't selected as alternate because they actually have 5 amanars (maroney, douglas, wieber, raisman & ross are all capable of doing an amanar) so even if 2 of them are injured they still have 3 athletes to do vault. and she's simply not needed on beam.

about Price - she was simply not selected over maroney because maroney will probably win gold on vault in EF, as well as incredibly boost the team score, while price may not even medal in vault finals (I don't know what's her second vault). they're not just thinking about team performances but about individual medals as well.

this team was really smartly chosen.
 
July 03, 2012
Votes: -4

Amy said:

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The decision was correct on all counts.

a. Nothing was ever guaranteed to the top 5, top 3 or top 10.

b. The AA score is not necessarily the best indicator of how much a gymnast can help the team in a 5-3-3 format.

c. Price has never been in a major international competition; it's unknown how she would react to that level of pressure. Maroney in contrast has two years of international competitive experience, and has done well at both PanAms and Worlds.

d. Barring a major disaster Maroney has a very good chance of walking away with an individual medal, and barring a minor disaster that medal has a good chance of being gold. Price does not.

e. Maroney has much better form than Price, which means she is likely to receive better E-scores from the Olympic judges.

Of course the team was selected on how well they can perform at the Games! Of course it's about winning! It's not Little League! Price's alternate spot is deserved.
 
July 03, 2012
Votes: -4

Rachel T said:

0
Still doesn't make the decision right
I find it sad that some believe "the decision was correct on all counts.". Odd that "Amy" and "margaret" had the exact same verbiage. The statement "maroney has much better form than Price," is simply just an opinion. The judges certainly didnt agree at the trials as Price outscored Maroney. It really is that simple. And the Olympics Is NOT all about winning. If someone really believes that, then that is so very sad. If everyone felt that way, many countries wouldn't even bother to compete. This isn't about trying to justify their decision, this is about doing the right thing. Price scored higher over Maroney. In the end, if we are not going to honor scores, then they shouldn't even bother having an Olympic trials. If someone were to research the main purpose of the Olympics, it was about world unity and friendship not winning all the medals. The comment "Price didn't have international experience and unknown if she could handle it and Maroney does," once again is just an opinion. The Olympics is a whole different ball game even over worlds. Go ahead and keep trying to justify the decision and I am sure people will come up with more justifications, but I wonder how you would feel if you were Price and if you would still feel it was a fair and just decision. If I would have been any of those gymnasts, I would accept with grace if I knew all other girls had scored higher than me. But that isn't what happened. If you want to keep justifying the selection process, then let's please stop the charade of an Olympic trials. If the committee is going to just pick whoever they want anyway then just have all the girls perform their routines without judges and take your picks. It is a complete joke and unfair on so many counts. I would rather the United States send the top 5 gymnasts that scored highest and represent our country with integrity (win or lose), than making everything all about winning and not worrying about was is fair or caring about who they crush along the way. "Amy" was right about one thing....."this isn't the little league". The fact is these gymnasts spend their whole lives and their family's money to achieve the Olympic dream. This is no joke and that is why fairness, honor, and integrity should be the priority when we represent the United States. It is so easy to say it is the best decision when it doesn't happen to you personally. Again, these are my opinions and other people are entitled to their opinions. I personally feel that the committee's decision was unfair, unjust, and just plain sad. I am a firm believer in doing what is fair. If Maroney had outscored Price at the trials and was truly in the top 5, then I would be saying she deserved to go. But that didn't happen and no one can justify it in my eyes or else like I said before let's not play games then and even bother to have a trials because scores evidently don't matter do they?
 
July 03, 2012
Votes: +7

Lisa S. said:

0
Agreed, but..
Rachel T, I agree with everything you have said.

The terrible thing about the type of situation Price has found herself in is that it is nothing new. This pattern has been lurking about for at least 20+ years (or more?), and had already claimed victims other than Price this time around.

Joan Ryan talks a lot about the politics/unfairness of who gets to go to major competitions vs who does not in her book Little Girls in Pretty Boxes.

I think the fact that elite international competitions in gymnastics has made a gradual shift from teams of all-around gymnasts to teams of event specialists makes the selection process all that more complicated, and prone to debate. I've even read that China has decided to send a team made up exclusively of event specialists to London for the men's gymnastics competition, due to the 5 team member limit.

Like you, I wish the process were simpler and more transparent. Take the top 5 all-around gymnasts at the end of the trials process. Then there would be no need for debate. I also wish we could go back to the 7-6-5 format, with compulsories. Maybe I'm a bit of a fanatic, but I loved watching compulsories. To see basic skills performed so beautifully is gymnastics at its best. In that sense, I agree with Alison Clements' comment completely.
 
July 04, 2012
Votes: +15
..., Low-rated comment [Show]

Rachel T said:

0
Money? ...Really?
Dragonair, i find it sad that you bring money into the equation. I don't think one single gymnast in this category would even list that as one of their wants or goals. In addition, I could list countless atheletes that have very wealthy endorsements that haven't even won a single medal, much less than going to the Olympics. You keep bring Maroney up. The fact is that she fell on a couple routines, stepped out of bounds on floor etc. She made mistakes. Price didnt have nearly the amount of mistakes. I am glad you are a fan of Maroney, but again it is just your opinion that her form is better than price's. Others would argue your opinion. As I said before, if Maroney had outscored Price than we wouldn't even be having this conversation because Maroney would be the one to go. Truthfully, it shouldn't matter if Maroney wins the gold medal (and I hope she does). I also don't care what other countries choose to do and send their "best" teams or perhaps cheat like some countries in the past. I only care what our country does and the important thing is being fair and just. Barring anything tragic, the United States is very strong in gymnastics and will win medals with or without Maroney. I truly think you would feel different if you were Price right about now who actually beat Maroney. Maroney made a lot of mistakes and this could have easily happened at the Olympics and Price could possibly beat Maroney's scores there just like she did at the trials. This shouldn't be all about the money or the medals. That's not why I love gymnastics. You mentioned Maroney training for only a week before trials. No offense, but the reason is that she FELL on one of her tumbling passes. Your own words were that she had a "scary fall" and a scary fall shows you are not showing proper control. You also state if Mroney didnt have her falls well then she would have beaten Price. Price BEAT Maroney because Maroney wasnt able to stay in control. You and I could debate all day who is the better gymnast and have valid reasons on both ends, but at the end of the day it still is a SUBJECTIVE sport and I am sure there have been many times you don't agree with a score. I don't play favorites and if Maroney would have scored higher than Price then I would be happy with the choices. I want was is fair for all these hard working athletes and this decision not only wasn't fair, but it is an embarrassment.
 
July 05, 2012
Votes: +7
You've got to be kidding me, Low-rated comment [Show]
..., Low-rated comment [Show]
..., Low-rated comment [Show]

Starr said:

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...
While the US may not NEED Alicia on Vault or Beam, she does her Rudi so well that she can bring in a score equal to or better than the Amanars everyone else on the team will do in team finals (minus Maroney or course). Personally, I think she's the 3rd/4th most secure beam worker in the US after Raisman and Weiber - possibly Ross - only b/c I think Ross occasionally competes without "flair" especially when she appears nervous. In fact, I think Alicia's more pleasant to watch only because she has better flow and more artistic touches than Weiber and Raisman.
So there was no room for Alicia on a 5-member team, but for her to not be given an alternate spot was surprising...unless she declined one, but i was under the impression from her interviews that she would take whatever spot she was offered. Has she spoken to the press at all since Trials concluded? (I know she didn't speak to press immediately following the event...would love to know her thoughts)
But these are just my thoughts...overall, though I'm happy (and very excited) with both women's and men's team.
 
July 05, 2012
Votes: -4
..., Low-rated comment [Show]

Rachel T said:

0
Shapo - you get over yourself
No need for personal insults "Shapo". Price came in 4th and Maroney came in 7th because of mistakes and falls. Price deserved to go and that is a fact. I would appreciate you not posting personal insults like "get over yourself" and commented on my lack of paragraphs. At least my comments make sense.
 
July 06, 2012
Votes: +7

Rachel T said:

0
Whatever
Amy, please don't insult my intelligence as I was a ver successful collegiate gymnast and nearly an elite. I know the extreme burden on families in terms of training costs and your whole point feeds into my entire argument all along. These gymnasts spend enormous amounts of money for this dream. Don't you think I get how the scoring works? Give me a break. I never questioned the selection committee's motives because I can guarantee you that they knew exactly who they were going to take for quite sometime. The trials were a charade. My whole death on all of this is given all the hard work and money spent, these decisions should be fair and the decision was not. So you don't think combined all around scores in the top 5 should warrant a 1st string place at the Olympics? Well, let's consider your logic then....if it is about each individual event, Price scored within the top 5 of every event, except for beam. This may mean nothing to you, but it does to me and others. When "shape" commented on Price's routine on how horrible it was and they wanted to turn the TV off was uncalled for and clearly the judges thought it was good enough to be in the top 5 scores. Price has the capability of scoring in the top 3 on at least half of the events. I don't want to argue this point with you or anyone else but will not tolerate personal attacks on myself. I m entitled to my opinion and you would be very wrong to think that I am the only one that feels this way. The selection process is unfair and unjust. That's my opinion.
 
July 06, 2012
Votes: +9
..., Low-rated comment [Show]
I Like Maroney Over Price, Low-rated comment [Show]

Rachel T said:

0
The new scoring system and top five is wrong
Hey "Dragonair". I am quit educated on the scoring and I know exactly what they were doing. I told you that I didn't think it was fair and that is it. Without compulsories, then why not just have gymnasts train on one apparatus and forget everything else then...which would be ridiculous. The fact is Price outscored Maroney by quit a lot 4 th versus 7th. If you are just going to go by past performance than don't even bother with. Trials because it is a sham. Or, just have Maroney do her vault at trials because that's all they cared about anyway. I could care less aboutthe rationaleor the new scoring system. Save a lot of people a lot of grief and don't even bother having a trials competition as it really means nothing. Maroney could have fallen on her vault and I am still sure they would have chosen her and rationalized it somehow. You have missed my whole point this entire time. I don't care if it makes good business sense or a stronger chance at medaling in the Olympics. My point is a Trials competition should take the top five period....that is the only fair way. I know how you are saying Maroney will probably only perform vault, but this whole new format is horribly unfair. Ifthe trials. That's it....I don't care how much more sense it is. I care about who performed better on what is supposed to be the most important competition leading up to the Olympics. Price was the better gymnast that night. The idea of apparatus specialists shouldn't even be allowed because you should be able tp perform all the routines. Of course if I agreed with how things are being done today, I can see why they selected Maroney. I am just stating this sport is going in a horrible direction such as eliminating compulsories....come on now that is a joke.
 
July 08, 2012
Votes: +9

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