You can always count on a dramatic meet especially at a competition like the 2012 Women’s Gymnastics Olympic Team Trials. Fifteen girls (technically 14 since Bridget Sloan had to withdraw last minute from competition due to an injury) are vying for a coveted spot as one of the five members on the Women’s Gymnastics Olympic Team. I had the chance to attend all four days of competition to watch the men’s and women’s. The Women’s Finals meet was by far the highlight for me. Ok, I lied. Seeing basically all of the girls at the airport the next day and taking pictures with McKayla Maroney and Anna Li was the highlight of the week. But the fact that we were there in person to hear them announcing the girls who made the team was so awesome. Going into day 2 of competition, we kind of knew which five girls were going to make the team. At the end of day 2 of competition, these five girls were named as members of Team USA who will represent at the 2012 London Olympic Games – Gabrielle Douglas, Jordyn Wieber, Aly Raisman, Kyla Ross and McKayla Maroney.

KennyGenius and Jason Georgiou with 2012 Olympian, McKayla Maroney and 2012 Olympic Alternate, Anna Li.

But the bigger question was, who will the Selection Committee choose as the alternates? Leading up to Trials, we speculated that the alternates could be Nastila Liukin, Sarah Finnegan or even Alicia Sacramone. However, as the competition went on, we saw misses and falls from Nastia (Bars), inexperiences coming into play with Sarah and decent showing from Alicia but her routines may not have the difficulty Team USA needs. A dark horse gymnast like Elizabeth Price was quite impressive at these Trials and hit 8-for-8 routines. She’s kind of like the non-televised Jordyn Wieber. Thankfully, she did herself a big favor and NBC finally put her face and gymnastics on TV. An even bigger dark horse was Anna Li. With only competing on two events, she capitalized on her specialty on the Uneven Bars. She had the highest Uneven Bars start value in the competition and nailed her routine on both days. Major controversy regarding the “Rybalko Debacle” caused quite a stir amongst the gym fans. The judges seem to be considering the skill as a parouetting move instead of a release move. So they are deducting her heavily for not finishing the skill in a handstand. We even asked Jordyn Wieber’s coach, John Geddert, about his thoughts on the skill and he says that the International judges will consider it as a release move. If that’s the case, Anna’s execution score should go up by 0.3 – 0.5. Along with Elizabeth Price and Sarah Finnegan, Anna Li joins as the third alternate member for Team USA.

So just for fun, we made our prediction on the team line up at the Olympics and placed the girls in order in which they will compete. During prelims, we are thinking they will put Aly Raisman on all four events like Jordyn Wieber and Gabby Douglas so she too can be eligible to compete for an all-around spot. The team should do really well with this line up. USA is the only team that can put up 5 Amanars on Vault (in case any of the girls get injured). With that kind of depth on Vault, Team USA could be untouchable. We’ll just have to see how ready the Russians, Chinese and Romanians can be once they get to London. As for now, check out our prediction. Do you agree?

Team line up

Team Prelims – 5 gymnasts per team, 4 up on each event, top 3 scores count towards team total.
Vault – Raisman, Douglas, Wieber, Maroney
Bars – Raisman, Wieber, Ross, Douglas
Beam – Ross, Wieber, Raisman, Douglas
Floor – Maroney, Douglas, Wieber, Raisman

Team Finals – 3-up 3-count – 3 gymnasts on each event with all 3 scores counting towards team total.
Vault – Wieber, Douglas, Maroney
Bars – Wieber, Ross, Douglas
Beam – Ross, Wieber, Raisman
Floor – Douglas, Wieber, Raisman