This Friday, the Greensboro Coliseum Complex will host 36 level 10 gymnasts as they compete in the 10th annual Nastia Liukin Cup. Since the beginning of the year up until now, level 10 gymnasts competed in Nastia Liukin Cup qualifying invitationals held across the country. Each invitational had two gymnasts qualify: one junior (15-) and one senior (16+).  Each year, a new and exciting field competes in the Nastia Liukin Cup, and this year is no different.

The Seniors

The senior competition is arguably the most interesting to watch with 18 of the top level 10s soon heading to the top universities. With the field being so deep, it’s almost impossible to predict who will take home the coveted Nastia Liukin Cup trophy, but Aspire’s Sierra Brooks will be one you won’t want to miss. Brooks has posted an all around score above 39.00 three times already this season and has gone undefeated in the all around. This will be Brooks’ first appearance at the Nastia Liukin Cup, but fans can expect to see big things from her. Faith Torrez-Foster of Legacy Elite will definitely be another one to watch. Torrez-Foster finished third all around in the junior division at last year’s Cup and has had an outstanding 2019 season so far as she currently holds the highest level 10 all around score in the country with a huge 39.300. She also posted an additional 39.00 at the Buckeye Classic.

Another one of the top seniors you can’t miss is 2018 five time JO National gold medalist, Makarri Doggette of Buckeye. After a stellar 2018 season, Doggette is continuing her success into the 2019 season. Like Torrez-Foster and Brooks, Doggette is a true all arounder and should definitely be able to make a top three finish.

Of course you can’t forget about Legacy Elite’s Andrea Li, Texas Dreams’ Kiya Johnson. Both competed in the senior division at last year’s Nastia Liukin Cup with Li finishing second all around and Johnson finishing fifth. Li and Johnson have both consistently posted scores in the high 38s so far this season and will be in the race for a place on the podium.

Andrea Li on beam at the 2018 Nastia Liukin Cup
Photo: John Cheng

The Juniors

The junior field is always an interesting one as each year new faces emerge as some of the youngest and top level 10s. Multiple gymnasts as young as 12 and 13 will be competing in the junior division this weekend, and the field is wide open for anyone in the junior division to take home the title.

Three gymnasts who competed Hopes last season will be competing on Friday, and they will be ones to watch for high difficulty. These gymnasts are: CJ Keuneke of TIGAR, Amber Lowe of Everest, and Jamison Sears of World Class.

High Point’s Gabrielle Gladieux will be returning to the Nastia Cup after finishing sixth in the junior division last year and had the junior highest qualifying scores this year with a 38.600. Gladieux has had a solid season so far and will be one to watch to take home the junior title.

The 2019 Nastia Liukin Cup will take place Friday, March 1 at 7:00 PM Eastern Time. Stay tuned for Chalk Warrior’s coverage of the event.

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