Say Cheese! UCSD Gymnastics brings home National Titles!
After a two-year hiatus from any competition, UCSD gymnastics headed to Milwaukee, Wisconsin to compete at the 2022 NAIGC National Championships. NAIGC stands for the national association of intercollegiate gymnastics clubs, and they are the governing body for gymnastics at the club level. Captained by Tessa Gluckman and Ryan Warner, the nine-member team competed across three days of competition and brought home two national titles, several national placements, and a few event finalists!
With the encouragement of national finalists and the return of gymnastics competitions, UCSD gymnastics returns to San Diego with a hunger to return to the 2023 NAIGC Nationals with even more difficult skills and beautiful routines!
On the men’s side, the team consisted of two developmental gymnasts and two level 9 gymnasts. Tim Schneider and Tomoharu Tanaka both had strong showings in the developmental level. While they did not qualify for event finals, they had many personal bests and firsts. Despite this being Tim’s very first gymnastics competition, he competed like a seasoned veteran. Tomo, making a return to competitive gymnastics, had some of the most cleanly executed routines of his career. Tuomas Oikarinen also had the routines of his career! Having perfect landings on five out of the six events and avoiding any falls, he scored many points above his last scored competition. As a level 9 gymnast, Tuomas also had the opportunity to and did qualify for event finals, where he placed fifth on the floor exercise! President and men’s captain, Ryan Warner, competed as a level 9 men’s gymnast and in the decathlon, which requires competing on the six traditional men’s events (floor, pommel horse, still rings, vault, parallel bars, and high bar) and the four traditional women’s events (vault, bars, beam, and floor). After being called “Super Clean” (for the artistry and presentation of his gymnastics skills), he qualified for three event finals: floor, vault (placing fourth), and parallel bars (placing second). Additionally, Ryan is the reigning champion of the decathlon and the women’s floor exercise, scoring the coveted perfect 10.0 in both qualification and finals!
On the women’s side, the team consisted of two level 6, one level 7, and three level 8 gymnasts. Annika Sy and Elise Jonas-Delson soared to new heights in level 6, as they each had strong showings and recorded personal bests. While performing new and more advanced skills, Annika (this being her first ever gymnastics competition) and Elise proved that UCSD gymnastics has a strong and competitive future. In level 7, Sarah Mackey rocketed into the collegiate scene. Making a comeback after five years, Sarah qualified into vault finals with the second highest qualifying score! Tessa Gluckman, Constance Zanze, and Ryan Warner represented the tritons in level 8. New to the NAIGC this year was the unified artistic gymnastics division. The goal of this division is to make every gymnastics event accessible to all gymnasts regardless of their sexual orientation or gender expression. Constance proved that her determination is a powerful force to be reckoned with as she successfully completed many new skills, including a layout backflip with a 360-degree twist on the floor exercise and a high bar to low bar transition on the uneven bars. Tessa’s years of technique and training were obvious, as she scored an all-around score of 36.0, which means that she averaged a 9.0/10.0 on each of the four events! Furthermore, her gracefulness and elegant tumbling landed her in the women’s floor finals alongside Ryan.