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Canadian Gymnasts Black and Onyhsko qualify for Women’s all-around Olympic final

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Isabela Onyshko of Brandon, MB and Ellie Black of Halifax, NS led team Canada to a 9th place finish in the qualification round of women’s artistic gymnastics Sunday in Rio de Janeiro, narrowly missing advancing to the team finals. Both did advance to the individual all-around final finishing 10th and 13th respectively.

 

The team had been hoping to improve on their historic 5th place finish in the team final from London 2012, and were obviously disappointed in the overall results. Their total score of 171.761 put them just .168 points behind the Netherlands, who took the final qualifying spot. The US team dominated the team competition, finishing a full 10 points of second place China and third place Russia. The top-8 teams advanced.

"It's disappointing. That was our main goal coming here to make that team final,” said Black who fell on beam, the team’s first rotation. "It's gymnastics. Sometimes there's mistakes, sometimes there's falls. You just have to pick yourself up and keep moving forward."

Shallon Olsen of Vancouver, BC also advanced to the vault finals next Sunday by becoming the first Canadian woman to perform the difficult Amanar vault, scoring a 14.950 to finish 6th; while Onyshko qualified for beam finals with a score of 14.533. Rose-Kaying Woo of Brossard, QC and Brittany Rogers of Vancouver, BC rounded out Team Canada.

“I used to do a Yurchenko with a double twist and now I have added another half turn. That´s a blind landing. You really don´t know where you are in the air. So when I landed it I just felt huge relief and excitement,” said Olsen, who at 16 is the youngest member of Team Canada in Rio. “It’s the greatest feeling in the world, showing the world that Canada is here. Watch out - my goal is to hopefully get a medal on vault."

The US took the top-3 spots in the all-around competition, but only Simone Biles and Alexandra Raisman will compete for the all-around title as only the top-2 competitors per country advance, leaving Gabby Douglas, the defending Olympic Champion out of the finals.