Lukacs, Li win 2016 Nastia Liukin Cup titles


NEWARK, N.J., March 4, 2016 – Rachael Lukacs of Hillsborough, N.J. /North Stars Gymnastics Academy. and Andrea Li of Aurora, Ill./Legacy Elite Gymnastics, won the senior and junior all-around titles, respectively, at the seventh-annual Nastia Liukin Cup at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. Competition continues tomorrow with the AT&T American Cup, the USA’s most prestigious international invitational and part of the International Gymnastics Federation’s World Cup all-around series, at 11:30 a.m. ET and the 2016 Elite Team Cup at 6 p.m.

  • Senior all-around medalists: 1. Rachael Lukacs, Hillsborough, N.J./North Stars Gymnastics, 38.475; 2. Missy Reinstadtler, Brick, N.J./North Stars Gymnastics Academy, 38.400; 3. Rachael Flam, Houston, Texas/Stars Gymnastics Houston, 38.375
  • Junior all-around medalists: 1. Andrea Li, Aurora, Ill./Legacy Elite Gymnastics, 38.275; 2. Lali Dekanoidze, Stallings, N.C./Southeastern Gymnastics Center, 38.075; 3. Amanda Cashman, Princeton, N.J./Arena Gymnastics, Inc., 37.900.
  • Lukacs’ event scores: 38.475, all-around; 9.900, vault (1st); 9.300, uneven bars; 9.425, balance beam; 9.850, floor exercise (1st).
  • Li’s event scores: 38.275, all-around; 9.500, vault; 9.550, uneven bars (tied for 1st); balance beam, 9.575 (tied for 1st); 9.650, floor exercise.
  • Lukacs quotes:
    On winning in N.J. – “It was amazing [to win in New Jersey]. I was speechless seeing everyone, just having them there for me was amazing.”
    On finishing 1-2 with her teammate: “It was crazy, Missy [Reinstadler] trained so hard, I’m so proud of her.”
    On her third year competing: “It never gets old, it’s always a new experience. Nastia does a great job.”
  • 400-2

  • Li quotes:
    On what’s next after her victory: “The year has gone well … I’m hoping to qualify for Nationals and maybe win a title.”
    On her parents being gymnasts: “It’s fun following in their footsteps, they’ve always pushed me.”
  • Shine Award: Natalie Wojcik, Douglasville, Pa./Berks Gymnastics Academy; awarded to the gymnast who “sparkled and shined” during the competition.
  • Named for 2008 Olympic all-around gold-medalist Nastia Liukin, the Nastia Liukin Cup was first held in 2010 in Worcester, Mass., and a portion of the proceeds from the Nastia Liukin Cup benefits the Nastia Liukin Fund, a charitable fund in partnership with the National Gymnastics Foundation (www.usagym.org/foundation).
  • Past sites for the Nastia Liukin Cup are: 2015, Arlington, Texas; 2014, Greensboro, N.C.; 2013 and 2010, Worcester, Mass.; 2012, New York City; and 2011, Jacksonville, Fla.

AP style results
2016 Nastia Liukin Cup
Prudential Center
Newark, N.J.
March 4, 2016

Senior all-around results
1. Rachael Lukacs, Hillsborough, N.J., 38.475
2. Missy Reinstadtler, Brick, N.J., 38.400
3. Rachael Flam, Houston, Texas, 38.375
4. Natalie Wojcik, Douglasville, Pa., 38.275
5. Kimberly Tessen, Orem, Utah, 38.100
6. Abigail Brenner, Maple Grove, Minn., 38.075
7. Rachel Baumann, Plano, Texas, 38.050
8. Makarri Doggette, Pickerington, Ohio, 38.025
9. Chloe Widner, Frisco, Texas, 37.950
10. Kyla Bryant, Watkinsville, Ga., 37.925
11. Alexandria Ruiz, Lake Mary, Fla., 37.825
12. Olivia Raymond, Wayne, Pa., 37.675
13. Gracen Standley, West Chester, Ohio, 37.400
14. Abby Heiskell, Waxhaw, N.C., 37.250
15. Jenna Swartzentruber, Centerburg, Ohio, 37.225
16. Wynter Childers, Spearfish, S.D., 37.075
17. Evanni Roberson, Yelm, Wash., 37.025
18. Abbey Nkansah, Algonquin, Ill., 35.800

Junior all-around
1. Andrea Li, Aurora, Ill., 38.275
2. Lali Dekanoidze, Stallings, N.C., 38.075
3. Amanda Cashman, Princeton, N.J., 37.900
4. Gabryel Wilson, Ypsilanti, Mich., 37.375
5. Abbie Thompson, Sanford, Fla., 37.300
6. Haleigh Bryant, Cornelius, N.C., 37.250
6. Elexis Edwards, Midlothian, Va., 37.250
8. Nevaeh DeSouza, Fairfield, Calif., 37.175
9. Akoray Subject, Plymouth, Minn., 37.100
9. Lauren Little, Mooresville, N.C., 37.100
11. Brooklynn Bloxom, Frisco, Texas, 37.025
12. Hunter Dula, Weddington, N.C., 36.875
13. Helen Hu, Chicago, Ill., 36.775
14. Cassie Stevens, Phoenix, Ariz., 36.700
15. Matilyn Waligora, Rochester, Mich., 36.525
16. Gabrielle McLaughlin, Aliso Viejo, Calif., 36.500
17. Jah’Liyah Bedminster, Loganville, Ga., 36.475
18. Rylie Mundell, Parker, Colo., 35.625

Background information

  • Nastia Liukin. At the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, Liukin’s total of five medals tied the U.S. gymnastics record for most medals in one Olympic Games, held by Mary Lou Retton (1984) and Shannon Miller (1992). Liukin’s Olympic medals are: gold – all-around; silver – team, balance beam and uneven bars; and bronze – floor exercise. Liukin was the third of four U.S. women to win the Olympic all-around crown. She also won nine World medals in her career. Liukin has graced many magazine covers and appeared on various shows, including "Gossip Girl," "Make It or Break It," and the feature film, "Stick It." Liukin is now attending New York University in New York City, studying sports management. She also has founded the Shine Agency and is traveling the country as part of the Shine Tour, where she shares her experiences – the highs and disappointments – with young women to encourage girls to shine in their own lives by setting goals, dreaming big and having confidence in themselves. Liukin was a contestant in the 2015 spring edition of “Dancing with the Stars” and was the grand marshal for the 2015 Indianapolis 500. Liukin currently serves as a gymnastics analyst for NBC Sports and was a special contributor during NBC’s coverage of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia. In 2012, she was a member of the creative team and a cast member for the Kellogg’s Tour of Olympic Champions, a national, 40-city tour that followed the 2012 Olympic Games. Liukin was coached by her father, Valeri, who has four Olympic medals from 1988 including two gold.

  • AT&T American Cup. The 2016 AT&T American Cup, a FIG World Cup event, is one of the most prestigious international invitational events and features an all-around format. The list of former champions comprises some of the sport’s best-known names, including Jordyn Wieber, Nastia Liukin, Jonathan Horton, Bart Conner, Paul Hamm, Shawn Johnson, Shannon Miller, Carly Patterson, Mary Lou Retton and Peter Vidmar. For more information, go to attamericancup.com.

  • Prudential Center. Prudential Center is a world-class sports and entertainment venue located in downtown Newark, New Jersey. Opened in October 2007, the state-of-the-art arena is the home of the National Hockey League’s (NHL) three-time Stanley Cup Champion New Jersey Devils, Seton Hall University’s NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball program, and more than 200 concerts, family shows and special events each year. Ranked in the Top 10 nationally by Pollstar, Billboard and Venue’s Today, Prudential Center is recognized as one of the premier venues in the United States, and welcomes more than two million guests annually. For more information about Prudential Center, visit PruCenter.com and Facebook, and follow @PruCenter on Twitter.