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University of Oklahoma men’s gymnastics sophomore and reigning NCAA and Winter Cup all-around champion Yul Moldauer added another title to his resume Saturday afternoon, winning the 2017 AT&T American Cup in Newark, N.J., with an all-around mark of 85.931.

Fellow American gymnast Akash Modi of Stanford finished in third with an 84.938 while 2016 Olympic all-around silver medalist Oleg Vernlaiev of Ukraine came in second at 85.699.

The AT&T American Cup is part of the International Gymnastics Federation World Cup series and is the most prestigious event on American soil this year. The competition was the first of many international events leading up to the World Championships and eventually the 2020 Olympic Games.

Moldauer started the meet posting a huge 14.566 that might have been his best routine of the day. That mark was nearly seven tenths better than second place and was the only score of 14.000 or better on the event. That space between Moldauer and the field proved to be important as his margin narrowed down the stretch. With the floor title wrapped up, Moldauer rolled his momentum, and an all-around lead and never looked back.

“It’s very shocking but I’m very honored.” Moldauer said about becoming American Cup Champion. Moldauer also stated his love and admiration on competing against his college partner and friend Akash Modi.

“We set that aside. Akash is a great guy. We had a lot of fun, we roomed together and we trained together, we cracked jokes together. It was nice rotating with him throughout the meet. We made each other relax when we got nervous, so it was great.”

Reagan Smith Wins The American Cup

On the women’s side, Smith recovered from an uncharacteristic miscue on balance beam to post the top score on floor exercise and win the American Cup on Saturday. Smith won the American Cup all-around with a dominating 56.099. Second-place Asuka Teramoto of Japan finished with a 54.231, while Melanie De Jesus dos Santos of France finished third with a 53.889. This was Smith’s  first major international meet for the Americans since the Summer Games.

It can be argued that the women’s competition at the 2017 American Cup is lacking in terms of star power with the absence of Simone Biles, Gabrielle Douglas, Aly Raisman and others, but a new star could have been born in the name of Reagan Smith.

The impressive list of former American Cup champions includes 2016 Olympic all-around gold medalist Simone Biles, 2012 Olympic all-around gold medalist Gabby Douglas, 2008 Olympic all-around gold medalist Nastia Liukin and silver medalist Shawn Johnson, 2004 Olympic all-around gold medalist Carly Patterson, along with “Fierce Five” member Jordyn Wieber as well as Shannon Miller and Mary Lou Retton. Now, add Smith to that list.

“It’s amazing to add my name to that list especially since my coach [Kim Zmeskal] did it also. Now she has a gymnast who has done it with her.” Smith said after winning the American Cup.

The meet started off flawlessly for Smith, as she scored a 14.433 on vault and 14.4 on uneven bars with a clean Jaeger and stalder Tkatchev.

However, on beam—usually her signature routine—she stumbled and fell off and got a score of 13.266 on the event. However, Smith rebounded with a strong performance on floor to score a 14.000.

“Even though I had a mistake on beam, I just brushed it off and showed myself what I can do do on floor,” Smith said. “I just made a little error, things happen, I’m not always perfect, obviously. But besides that, I thought I did a good job.”

Smith built up so much equity in her performance, the early slip up meant nothing to the final outcome.

The American Cup was the first of three all-around competitions of the FIG’s World Cup season. The second  is the DTB Cup, to be held March 18-19 in Stuttgart, Germany, followed by the London World Cup, scheduled for April 8 at the O2 Arena, site of the gymnastics competition at the 2012 Olympic Games.

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