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Gwinnett native Ragan Smith fifth at US Gymnastics Olympic Trials

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Aly Raisman

The U.S. Selection Committee will select a five-woman team and three alternates following Sunday's meet.

Gwinnett native Ragan Smith sits in fifth place after the first day of U.S. Women’s Gymnastic Olympic Trials.

Smith, just 15, was right behind at 58.7 in fifth place, two spots ahead of Gabby Douglas in a meet that helps determine the five-person team for this summer’s Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

If that wasn't enough evidence that the U.S. Olympic women's gymnastics trials were a mental torture chamber, reigning Olympic all-around gold medalist Gabby Douglas fell off the balance beam, dropping her into seventh place after the first day of competition here.

Barring injury - or an unexpected poor performance - Simone Biles, Gabby Douglas, Aly Raisman and Laurie Hernandez are strong favorites to make the women's team.

"For me, I just have to know my body", Douglas said.

For Karolyi, who has a solid idea of the team in her head, little changed after the first night of competition.

She's back, and although the first night of trials was not her best, there's still a very good chance Douglas will continue on the Road to Rio. Chow reportedly was not pleased with the out-of-gym commitments that put Douglas on magazine covers and even landed her a movie and a reality TV show.

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'If she feels that Christian, my assistant coach, will be able to spot her if needed in Rio as well as energize her, then I want what is best for her'.

"I built her up and know her possibilities", the coach said.

"We're always talking about striving for that perfection", Hernandez said. "Even walking around, I'm too exhausted".

For Kocian, that excitement from introductions carried into the first rotation, when she stepped out of bounds on a floor routine pass.

"Some girls would maybe freak out", she said of the multiple mistakes made.

"I do this thing where I guess I roll my ankles a lot, and she was just like, 'Stop moving, just breathe, '" Hernandez said. So Douglas may still be okay.

The second half of the Trials takes place Sunday, July the 10th, and will air live on NBC at 6:30 p.m. MT.

 

 

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