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Johnson Defends U.S. Title
(4 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

World all-around champion Shawn Johnson defended her U.S. title Saturday at the Visa Championships in Boston.

Johnson held the lead through all four events, and scored a 127.500 overall. 2005 and 2006 champion Nastia Liukin was second with a 126.500, and Chellsie Memmel placed third at 123.150.

Johnson breezed through the day, again topping 16.000 on three events. She hit her Amanar vault with one step (16.000), and took a small step on her layout double-double dismount on bars (15.550). She notched a 16.300 on beam, with an improved full-in dismount from day one, and a rock solid standing full. Johnson closed her night on floor with a 16.200, sticking both her tucked double-double mount and her full-in dismount.

"It feels great to be in this position again, going into Trials and heading into Beijing," she said afterwards, "Overall I feel that I had a really great meet."

Liukin had the highest all-around score of day two (64.200 to Johnson's 64.050), and without a fall on day one on floor, may have taken the top spot. Though she took a step on her Yurchenko 1 1/2 (14.900), she more than made up for it with a 17.100 on bars. Liukin's pirouetting work was as superb as always, and despite a low landing and some form errors on her double front -half dismount, she outscored Thursday's mark by .05. On beam, Liukin glided through her aerial to flip flop layout series and Onodi without a wobble for a 16.35. She closed her night with a 15.85 on floor, and solid landings on all four tumbling passes (front full to double full, double front, 1 1/2 to rudi, 2 1/2).

"Honestly I don't think I've ever felt this happy about a second place," Liukin noted after the meet. "I'm a competitive person at heart, and I get that from my dad 100 percent... but I was really happy with how this whole weekend went besides that first fall on the first day."

Memmel retained her third place ranking from day one, and increased her all-around score by more than a point. She hit a 16.300 on bars with a newly-added reverse hecht, as well as her trademark jam to double front dismount. Beam wasn't as smooth as Thursday, but Memmel still managed a 15.450 after a wobble on her illusion and a few missed connections (front tuck to flip flop layout, front aerial to side aerial). On floor, Memmel's stacked routine (Arabian double pike, double layout, back 2 1/2 to front layout) earned a 15.600, and she upgraded on vault to a Yurchenko 1 1/2. — a decision that was made after touch warm-ups.

"I hadn't warmed up that vault, but I tried it in touch and it went well. I had a lot of adrenalin, so I went for it," she explained.

Samantha Peszek (DeVeaus) was fourth, with a great beam routine (16.000) offsetting a fall on floor (hands down on her last pass of 1 1/2 to double pike).

Ivana Hong (GAGE) rose to fifth, and Jana Bieger (Bieger's) ended in sixth. First-year senior Mattie Larson finished seventh and won the bronze on floor exercise.

Alicia Sacramone (Brestyan's) won vault for her fourth consecutive year, despite a watered-down Yurchenko full vault today due to a cramp in her calf. Liukin took bars and beam, and Johnson claimed the floor title.

The top 12 gymnasts in the all-around plus vault champion Alicia Sacramone were named to the U.S. national team. The national team plus Bridget Sloan, Shayla Worley, Britney Ranzy, Amber Trani, Chelsea Davis and Darling Hill advance to the U.S. Olympic Trials, June 19-22 in Philadelphia.

Click here to download detailed results.

2008 U.S. Women's Championships
June 5-7, Boston

Senior All-Around
1. Shawn Johnson 127.500
2. Nastia Liukin 126.500
3. Chellsie Memmel 123.150
4. Samantha Peszek 122.000
5. Ivana Hong 120.750
6. Jana Bieger 120.100
7. Mattie Larson 118.850
8. Corrie Lothrop 117.650
9. Randy Stageberg 116.000
10. Mackenzie Caquatto 114.850
11. Olivia Courtney 114.100
12. Alaina Johnson 113.000
13. Christa Tanella 112.800
14. Britney Ranzy 112.750
15. Ashley Stott 111.850
16. Katelyn Mohr 111.450
17. Kimberly Jacob 110.850

Senior Vault
1. Alicia Sacramone 30.700
2. Britney Ranzy 29.400

Senior Uneven Bars
1. Nastia Liukin 34.150
2. Chellsie Memmel 32.300
3. Bridget Sloan 31.700
4. Jana Bieger 31.000
5. Shawn Johnson 30.950
6. Samantha Peszek 30.700
7. Ivana Hong 30.050
8. Mattie Larson 29.450
9. Corrie Lothrop 29.100
10. Mackenzie Caquatto 28.950
11. Christa Tanella 28.450
12. Alaina Johnson 28.300
13. Britney Ranzy 27.200
13. Katelyn Mohr 27.200
15. Randy Stageberg 27.050
16. Ashley Stott 26.950
17. Olivia Courtney 26.750
18. Kimberly Jacob 26.550

Senior Balance Beam
1. Nastia Liukin 32.450
2. Shawn Johnson 32.300
3. Alicia Sacramone 31.650
4. Chellsie Memmel 31.500
5. Samantha Peszek 31.400
6. Ivana Hong 31.050
7. Bridget Sloan 30.600
8. Jana Bieger 29.950
9. Amber Trani 29.600
10. Corrie Lothrop 29.400
10. Randy Stageberg 29.400
12. Olivia Courtney 29.200
13. Mattie Larson 28.900
14. Kimberly Jacob 28.400
15. Mackenzie Caquatto 28.200
16. Alaina Johnson 28.150
17. Katelyn Mohr 27.350
17. Ashley Stott 27.350
19. Christa Tanella 26.850
20. Darling Hill 26.500
21. Britney Ranzy 25.900

Senior Floor Exercise
1. Shawn Johnson 32.250
2. Alicia Sacramone 31.400
3. Mattie Larson 31.050
4. Chellsie Memmel 30.700
5. Darling Hill 30.350
6. Jana Bieger 30.300
6. Ivana Hong 30.300
8. Nastia Liukin 30.100
9. Randy Stageberg 30.050
10. Samantha Peszek 29.950
11. Corrie Lothrop 29.650
12. Christa Tanella 29.600
13. Britney Ranzy 29.500
14. Alaina Johnson 29.350
15. Olivia Courtney 28.950
16. Katelyn Mohr 28.850
17. Ashley Stott 28.600
18. Amber Trani 28.550
19. Mackenzie Caquatto 28.500
20. Kimberly Jacob 27.600

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