Who’s Who in the 2013 Secret Classics – The Juniors


The junior ranks are full of talented, exciting gymnasts. They also seem to be full of great floor performers. So if you like floor, this is a competition you don’t want to miss.

Junior National Team Members

The following girls are members of the Junior National Team. They are definitely ones to watch.

Bailie Key

Part of the Texas Dream Team, at 12 years old, Bailie is already a seasoned international competitor and well known in the world of gymnastics. She is a great performer, a strong all-arounder, and shows a level-headedness that belies her young age.  Her performance abilities brings to mind the gymnasts of the 80’s and 90’s, bringing back an artistic AND athletic style much missed in the gymnastics community. She is definitely a favorite for 2016 and one we will continue to watch over the next few years.

2013 USA, Germany, Romania Tri-Meet, Chemnitz, Germany – 1st-Team; 1st-AA (Jr. Div.)
2013 City of Jesolo Trophy, Jesolo, Italy – 1st-AA, VT, BB, FX; 3rd-UB (Jr. Div.)
2012 City of Jesolo Trophy, Jesolo, Italy – 1st-Team; 2nd-VT, FX; 3rd-AA(T); 6th-UB (Jr. Div.)
2012 Visa Championships, St. Louis, Mo. – 3rd-VT, BB, FX(T); 4th-AA; 7th-UB (Jr. Div.)

Amelia Hundley 

Amelia has had a distinguished junior career, and there are high expectations of her continued leadership in the junior field. She has been competing internationally since 2011 and this will be her third U.S. Classics. She has an incredibly entertaining floor routine, Everyone will be watching her performances carefully.

2013 USA, Germany, Romania Tri-Meet, Chemnitz, Germany – (Jr. Div.)
2013 City of Jesolo Trophy, Jesolo, Italy – 3rd-AA, BB; 6th-UB, FX (Jr. Div.)
2012 Visa Championships, St. Louis, Mo. – 3rd-UB; 4th-BB; 5th-VT, FX; 6th-AA (Jr. Div.)
2012 Secret U.S. Classic, Chicago, Ill. – 2nd-BB; 3rd-AA, VT, UB(T); 4th-FX (Jr. Div.)

Polina Shchennikova 

Polina brings such a strong reminiscent of Nastia, many look forward to her beam and bars contribution in the future. Polina is without a doubt a talented, hard-working, beautiful gymnast who has a lot of potential for the future. This will be her 4th Classics as a junior.

2012 Visa Championships, St. Louis, Mo. – 4th-UB; 10th-AA (Jr. Div.)
2012 Secret U.S. Classic, Chicago, Ill. – 2nd-UB; 9th-AA (Jr. Div.)

Lauren Hernandez 

Laurie is most definitely one of the most charismatic gymnasts since Shawn Johnson or Mary Lou Retton. In addition, the girl can perform and dance like very few US gymnasts. Laurie has a great deal of potential as an all-arounder – a strong vaulter, a decent bar swinger, and shows incredible poise and skills on beam and floor. In addition, she is irresistible once you start talking to her. She is rare in the gymnastics world- personality, poise, power. Everyone looks forward to her senior career with much anticipation. She is exactly who many would want to represent the USA in 2016. (Check out the Junior Watch I did on her for The Couch Gymnast)

2012 Visa Championships, St. Louis, Mo. – (Jr. Div.)
2012 Secret U.S. Classic, Chicago, Ill. – 6th-FX; 7th-BB (Jr. Div.)

Nia Dennis

Nia is really fun to watch on floor with her unique style and powerful tumbling. She is also very strong on the beam. This will also be Nia’s fourth US Classics.

2012 Visa Championships, St. Louis, Mo. – 5th-BB; 7th-AA(T); 8th-FX (Jr. Div.)

Other Exciting Juniors

There are so many juniors, it is hard to pick which ones to highlight! But these girls definitely stand out in a crowd. Some of them have been youtube sensations and we have awaited their elite debut with much anticipation. Others are bright shining new stars.

Norah Flatley

Norah has been widely followed on the internet, especially for her phenomenal beam routines. She shows incredible flexibility combined with poise and athleticism. Norah trains under Chow, and shows an incredible amount of promise. She is one of the already incredibly promising seniors of 2016- the next summer Olympics. She will continue to be watched with a careful eye and much anticipation in the coming years.

2012 Women’s Junior Olympic Level 10 National Championships, Hampton, Va. – 1st-BB; 3rd-AA(T) (Jr. A)

Emily Schild 

 Emily caught my eye – and the eye of many others- at the Nastia Liukin Cup this year. Though she didn’t place well or catch much TV time, she was obviously full of talent and potential. Emily is a new elite and has the potential of being one we should watch.

Ariana Agrapides

Ariana skyrocketed from level 8 to level 10 in 2012. She qualified to junior elite this year and went on to win the American Classic – beating her teammate Lauren Hernandez. She is a little pixie and seems to have the potential of a strong all arounder. Considering that just last year she was a level 8, this girl is quite extraordinary!

2013 American Classic, Huntsville, TX. – 1st UB, 1st AA, 2nd VT, 2nd BB, 2nd FX
2013 Women’s Level 10 National Championships, Minneapolis, Minn. – 2nd-VT(T); 5th-UB(T); 9th-AA (Jr. A)

Jordan Chiles

Jordan is a little fireball. She shows unique choreography, powerful tumbling with catlike landings and an awesome vault. It will definitely be exciting to see her elite debut.

2013 The American Classic, Junior International Elite, Olympic Training Center – 1st-AA, 1st VT, 2nd BB, 3rd-UB, 8th FX

Sydney Johnson-Scharpf

Sydney not only catches your eye, she demands your attention when she performs on floor – and then captures your heart. This little girl can perform! Daughter of Brandy Johnson, Sydney seems to have the genes and the coaching, as well as her own special spark to be one we want to watch.

2013 Nastia Liukin Cup, Worcester, Mass. –
2012 Level 9 Easterns, Landover, MD – 1st-BM; 2nd-V, FX, AA
2012 Level 9 Regionals, Tampa, FL – 1st-VT, BM, AA; 2nd-B, FX

This will be an exciting meet!

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