Cornell hosted the USA Gymnastics Women’s Collegiate National Championships over the weekend where freshman gymnast Sydney Beers won the national title in the all-around.
The meet spanned three days, starting with the first session on Friday at 2 pm and concluding with the final, individual session on Sunday night.
The first session featured teams from the United States Air Force Academy, Lindenwood University, Southeast Missouri State and West Chester University as well as individual gymnasts representing SUNY Bridgeport and Southern Connecticut State.
Cornell took part in the second session, going up against Brown, Texas Woman’s University and Yale as well as against individual competitors from Bridgeport, Centenary College of Louisiana and Southern Connecticut State.
The Red put up yet another season high team score, an impressive 192.050, going back to back with its stellar performance at ECG championships two weeks prior. However, it wasn’t enough to advance to team finals on Saturday, ultimately finishing in fourth place.
Air Force, Brown, Lindenwood and Texas Woman’s advanced to Saturday’s team finals with Texas Women’s University eventually coming out on top with a 196.025 team score.
Sydney Beers was a force to be reckoned with the entire weekend. She posted her title earning and career high — 39.125 all-around score in session II on Friday, making her a national champion days before the individual finals on Sunday. Her USAG title in the all-around is a feat no other Cornellian has ever accomplished.
Beers never slowed down. She went on to lead the Big Red on vault with a sixth place finish and tied senior Miranda Lund for eighth place on floor, both earning Beers first team All-American honors. She also secured second team honors on beam and ended the weekend as a four time All-American.
Three other Cornellians finished the meet with All-American honors. Lund won first team honors on floor while freshman Kate Michelini was first team all-American on bars. Michelini and junior Victoria DeMeo both earned second team all-American honors on floor.
“Believe it or not, at nationals I felt the least nerves,” Beers said about heading into the weekend. “I went into the competition knowing it was the last of the season and was just trying to have the most fun possible and leave it all out on the floor. There are always nerves at a competition but at nationals it was more the adrenaline kicking in.”
Winning a national title is an incredible accomplishment for any athlete, let alone a freshman, and it was an incredible surprise when head coach Melanie Hall told Beers that she had won.
“I knew during the meet that I had a shot to beat my career high after my hit bar routine, however the idea of winning the national title wasn’t in my head until after I finished my last event, floor,” Beers said. “The feeling of knowing I won after my coach told me is one that I will never forget.”
Beers also enjoyed a unique experience in the fact that she won a national title in front of her home crowd, though she insists it was not as much of an advantage.
“Competing at your own gym has a small advantage because the stands are filled with people that you know cheering you on, however once you are warmed up and ready to go, where you are doesn’t matter, as long as you give it your best effort and have your team there to support you,” Beers said.
It was a successful weekend for Big Red gymnastics, and one that Beers will never forget.
“Overall, the weekend was amazing and an experience of a lifetime,” Beers said.
The conclusion of the USAG national championships marks the end of the 2021-2022 season for gymnastics.