Team USA qualifies fourth for men's gymnastics final in Tokyo

Posted at 8:07 AM, Jul 24, 2021

The fields for the men's Olympic gymnastics team final, individual all-around final and event finals are set after a full day of qualification at the Ariake Gymnastics Centre. 

After a slow start, the U.S. turned things around to qualify fourth for the final with a score of 256.761. The Americans combined for the highest score on floor exercise at 44.065 and will pursue the nation's first team medal since 2008. 

But the biggest storyline of the day revolves around who will not advance to a final, and that's Japanese star Kohei Uchimura. Likely competing in his last Olympic Games, Uchimura opted to only compete on high bar, where he would have been a gold medal favorite, rather than pursue a team spot. But in a shocking turn of events, his grip slipped on a release and he fell off the bar. He finished his routine and ended up 20th overall, well out of the final, with a score of 13.866.

Also missing out on the high bar final was Team USA veteran Sam Mikulak. Mikulak, in the hunt for his first medal in his third Olympic Games, had a series of errors in his routine and scored a 12.866 -- the lowest of any American. Mikulak finished fourth in the high bar final at the 2016 Games

He'll still get to compete in an event final, however, as he somewhat surprisingly qualified fifth overall on parallel bars. In his first event of the night, Mikulak scored a 15.433. 

SEE MORE: Sam Mikulak hits 15.433 parallel bars routine

Brody Malone (high bar), Yul Moldauer (floor exercise) and Alec Yoder (pommel horse) will also represent the U.S. in event finals. Yoder was the highest-placing U.S. qualifier, finishing fourth overall with a 15.200. Shane Wiskus just missed out on the floor exercise final, finishing in ninth place.

SEE MORE: Specialist Alec Yoder hits stellar pommel horse routine

Malone and Mikulak will also represent the U.S. in the men's individual all-around final, putting together scores of 85.298 and 84.664, respectively. Japan's Daiki Hashimoto put together the highest all-around score at 88.531, followed by Russian star Nikita Nagornyy at 87.897. 

As for the rest of the team contest, Japan had the highest qualifying score at 262.251 followed by China at 262.061 and the Russian Olympic Committee at 261.945 -- well ahead of the U.S. 

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