Both Cal Men and Women Gymnastics compete in NCAA Championships semifinals
Updates of Cal Gymnastics action at NCAA semifinals
I will be updating this post before the more complete recaps of today’s gymnastics action from both Fort Worth, Texas and Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Cal Men’s Gymnastics places 6th in NCAA Semifinal 2
With no drop scores and the funky scoring system that rewards special and unique skills, it would have been nearly impossible for No.11 Cal to grab one of the three spots to advance to Saturday as a team. Nonetheless, the Bear will fight to the end.
Several Bears set new personal bests as the Bears earned a season-high 392.055 as a team.
Freshman and recently crowned National Rookie of the Year Noah Newfeld had the top Cal all-around score of 78.630 but that’s the 5th best all-around in the session among gymnasts not on the three advancing schools - Stanford, Michigan, Minnsota.
Three Cal Bears have qualified for Saturday’s championship session as individuals. Yu-Chen Lee on floor (13.966), Caleb Rickard on vault (14.300) and horizontal bars (13.233), and Noah Newfeld on horizontal bars (13.166) will represent the Cal Golden Bears in Saturday’s final session.
Cal Women’s Gymnastics places 3rd in NCAA Semifinal 1
Showing plenty of resolve, the Golden Bears (197.3625) fought until the very end. They fell just short of top-ranked Florida Gators (197.4375) for the second spot to advance to the Championship final session on Saturday along with Michigan (197.8625). Minnesota rounded out session 1 with a score of 197.1875.
Cal junior Maya Bordas is the session 1 leader on the uneven bars, posting a career-best 9.95. We will have to see how session 2 do to see if Bordas can come away with an NCAA individual championship on the apparatus that the Cal Bears have done the best at this year.
Apparently, the Cal Bears were nearly going to be tragically DQ’ed for COVID protocol reasons about 70 minutes before the meet. This decision was reversed 42 minutes before the meet to allow the Cal Bears to compete. These are obviously unnecessary emotional rollercoasters for the Cal team. Ugh.
Cal Bears will start on Floor (Cal is 6th in the country) -> Vault (Cal is 9th) -> Bars (Cal is 1st) -> Beam (Cal is 9th).
Having their strongest rotation third will be good for the Bears to possibly make up some points or make a huge statement then. However, the Bears will need to check their nerve, particularly if a Final Four berth is within grasp, on the balance beam in the final rotation.
The Golden Bears will sport their typical Cal Blue leotard in today’s meet.
No.5 Cal Women’s Gymnastics will seek a spot in the NCAA Final Four.
While the Golden Bears are probably a slight underdog of claiming one of the two available spots from Session I against No.1 Florida, No.4 Michigan, and No.8 Minnesota, Cal’s Regional Final score that was just behind that of Michigan (at the same meet, scored by the same judges) was actually ahead of the scores by Florida and Minnesota (following the same scoring rubrics but at a different NCAA Regional).
The best out of this Cal team this afternoon, who has already rewritten half of the program history book, might just achieve the most historic feat yet.
Should the team not advance to the final session on Saturday, the top three finishers in each of the 4 apparatus and the all-around will advance to the final session as individual competitors.
No.11 Cal Men’s Gymnastics will also be challenging for one of three spots into tomorrow’s NCAA Championship. Cal will be in the 5 PM PT evening session against No. 2 Michigan, No. 3 Stanford, No. 6 Penn State, No. 7 Iowa, and No. 10 Minnesota.
More realistically, the Cal men may challenge in one of the six apparatus and possibly the all-around (though I do not think Cal had a strong all-arounder this year).