© Filippo Tomasi
RIMINI, Italy (May 29, 2022) – U.S. T&T Senior National Team members Miah Bruns (Crete, Ill./World Champions Centre) and Sarah Webster (Lafayette, La./Trampoline and Tumbling Express) topped the women’s tumbling and women’s trampoline fields, respectively, as the 2022 AERE World Cup wrapped Saturday in Rimini, Italy. In all, U.S. seniors collected six World Cup medals, while juniors and athletes competing in the 17-21-year-old age group added 14 of their own at the accompanying AERE Trampoline Cup, which concluded Friday.
Tomas Minc (Chevy Chase, Md./Dynamite Gymnastics) and Tasha Williams (Peoria, Ill./World Champions Centre) each snared silver, and Shelby Nobuhara (Mapleton, Utah/High Altitude), the reigning World silver medalist in women’s double mini trampoline, earned bronze. Webster and partner Nicole Ahsinger (Lafayette, La./Trampoline and Tumbling Express) were runners up in women’s synchronized trampoline.
New in 2022, the International Gymnastics Federation has implemented an updated tumbling and double mini finals format in which the top-four scorers after the first pass advance to a winner-take-all second round. Competing under the new system, Bruns delivered a decisive second pass during Saturday’s women’s tumbling final to claim gold. Her 25.200 outpaced Williams’ 22.700, as the Americans finished one-two. Jill Papenhause (Tremont, Ill./Central Illinois Gymnastics Academy) was ninth during Friday’s qualifications with a combined 44.900.
On the men’s side, two-time World individual bronze medalist Kaden Brown (Herriman, Utah/Wasatch Trampoline and Tumbling) finished just off the podium in fourth in his last international outing before the World Games in July after an error in his last pass left him with a final score of 20.100. Dominic Dumas (Athens, Ala./Air Extreme) was fifth with a 27.100. Australia’s Ethan McGuinness led the way with a 30.100. Patrick Lyell (Kenner, La./Elmwood Gymnastics Academy) and Alec Pelezo (Magnolia, Texas/World Champions Centre) were seventh and ninth during qualifications, posting scores of 50.700 and 49.100, but neither advanced to Saturday’s final due to the two-athletes-per-country limit.
Webster’s 53.400 nosed Germany’s Leonie Adam for women’s individual trampoline gold. Jessica Stevens (Ellicott City, Md./Fairland Gymnastics) also advanced to the individual final where she finished seventh. Earlier in the day, Webster and two-time Olympian Ahsinger (45.860) were bested in women’s synchro only by Georgia’s Anano Apakidze and Teona Janjgava who captured the title with a 46.430. During individual qualifications Friday, Maia Amano (Honolulu, Hawaii/Fairland Gymnastics) advanced to the semifinal round and finished 13th with a 51.470. Ahsinger (49.570) was 37th.
Cody Gesuelli (Huntsville, Ala./Merino Trampoline Gymnastics Academy), who led the U.S. men’s trampoline contingent with a finals score of 57.290, was just edged out of a podium spot by bronze medalist Benjamin Kjaer (57.360) of Denmark. Japan’s Yasuhiro Ueyama topped the field with a 58.520. Aliaksei Shostak (Lafayette, La./Trampoline and Tumbling Express) finished sixth after notching a 56.920 in Saturday’s final. Elijah Vogel (Longmont, Colo./Elevated Trampoline Sports Academy) landed 10th in the semifinals with a 56.130. Isaac Rowley (Allen, Texas/Eagle Gymnastics Academy) was 26th with a 55.370 in the opening round. Gesuelli and Vogel were eighth in men’s synchro. Japan’s Ryosuke Sakai and Hiroto Unno (51.650) earned gold in the two-person event.
Double mini athletes Minc and Changa Anderson (Washington, D.C./Silver Stars Gymnastics) both advanced to the top-four finals shootout where Minc took silver with a 28.200. Anderson (23.300), who delivered Friday’s highest-scoring qualification pass of 29.400, finished fourth. Spain’s David Franco nabbed the top spot with a 28.800. Hunter Moravec (Downers Grove, Ill./Elite Sports Complex) was fifth in qualifications but did not advance due to the two-athletes-per-country rule.
Nobuhara’s final pass solicited a score of 25.500 to secure her the bronze medal, while two-time team double mini World champion Tristan Van Natta (Marysville, Ohio/Integrity Athletics) finished fifth with a 25.100. Canada’s Gabriella Flynn set the bar with a 26.100. Aliah Raga (Denton, Md./Dulles Gymnastics Academy) notched the fifth-highest qualification score with a 50.200 but placed behind teammates Nobuhara and Van Natta who earned the United States’ two available finals spots.
Eighteen additional U.S. gymnasts between the ages of 13-21 were also in action this week at the Fiera de Rimini, and 13 are returning home with hardware. Americans topped the AERE Trampoline Cup podium in women’s 17-21 and 13-16 trampoline, women’s 13-16 tumbling, and men’s and women’s 13-16 double mini, while completing the medal-stand sweep in the women’s tumbling and men’s double mini competitions.
Rosalie Thongphay (San Tan Valley, Ariz./USA Youth Fitness Center), Brooklyn Jolley (West Haven, Utah/Northern Star Bounder) and Amelia Gasper (Delavan, Ill./Central Illinois Gymnastics Academy) finished first, second and third in the women’s 13-16 tumbling division behind scores of 46.100, 45.200 and 44.600, respectively. Teammate London Hunt (Spring, Texas/World Champions Center) was fourth with a 43.000.
Xavier Harper (Oak Ridge, Tenn./Premier Athletics Knoxville) and Amare Walker (Watchung, N.J./Cavu Trampoline and Tumbling) added silver and bronze on the men’s side. Harper claimed the second spot with a 48.400, while Walker rounded out the top-three with a 45.400. Azerbaijan’s Bilal Gurbanov topped the men’s tumbling scoresheet with a 48.500, while American Micah Miner (Glen Carbon, Ill./Kris Power Tumbling) finished just off the podium in fourth with a 43.100.
Miner’s 52.700 set the pace in the men’s 13-16 double mini final. Will Cockrill (Plano, Texas/Flip Factory) took silver with a 50.600, and Max Poveda (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif./World Elite Gymnastics) nabbed the third podium spot with a 50.100, giving the Americans their second top-three sweep.
In women’s 13-16 double mini, Jackie Kent (Downers Grove, Ill./Elite Sports Complex) secured another gold medal for the U.S. Her 50.600 just edged Thongphay (50.400) who settled for silver. Leah Edelman (Holmdel, N.J./Elite Trampoline Academy) was fourth with a 47.400.
Peyton Brown (Round Rock, Texas/Tumble Tech) and Ava Hernando (Holmdel, N.J./Elite Trampoline Academy) went one-two in women’s 17-21 trampoline. Brown led the field with a 50.250. Hernando was close behind with a 49.740. All four participating U.S. trampolinists advanced to the women’s 13-16 final. Leah Garafalo (Cream Ridge, N.J./Elite Trampoline Academy) snared the gold medal with a 51.450, while her club teammate Ava DeHanes (Holmdel, N.J.) took silver with a 51.200. Rayleigh Huette (Weimar, Texas/Victoria Gymagic Inc.) was fourth with a 48.920, and Edelman (26.150) finished eighth. The pairs of DeHanes and Huette and Edelman and Garafalo were fifth and seventh, respectively, in the 13-16 women’s synchronized trampoline competition.
Jace Williams (Cave Creek, Ariz./North Valley Gymnastics) ended up 13th in men’s 17-21 trampoline qualifications. Bulgaria’s Maksim Angelov (52.930) claimed the division’s top spot. Cockrill’s 50.310 in the men’s 13-16 final positioned him fourth. Teammates Gavin Britton (Bennington, Neb./Premier Gymnastics) and Miner were 10th and 11th in men’s 13-16 qualifications. Harper finished 19th. Azerbaijan’s Magsud Mahsudov captured the 13-16 title with a 55.860. The duo of Britton and Cockrill landed seventh in 13-16 men’s synchro, and Harper and Miner were ninth in qualifications.
The U.S. trampoline and tumbling season continues June 21-25, as national champions are crowned at the USA Gymnastics Championships in Des Moines, Iowa. Pan American Championships will follow June 26-28 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The World Games are slated for July 15-17 in Birmingham, Ala.