US gymnasts Jade Carey and Brody Malone win gold at world championships

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USA gymnasts Jade Carey and Brody Malone capped off their world championships with gold medals in the apparatus finals, highlighting Team USA’s strong performance over the past two days of competition. In addition to gold medals for Carey on vault and Malone on high bar, Team USA won four more medals this weekend at the event’s final stop in Liverpool, England.

Shilese Jones, a silver medalist at the national championships this summer, stood out on her world championship debut. She won a silver medal in the all-around and another silver on bars to go along with her gold medal in the team competition. On bars last Saturday, she delivered an excellent routine to score a 14.766, behind only China’s Wei Xiaoyuan and ahead of Olympic gold medalist Nina Derwael of Belgium. Consistency had been a problem for Jones in the past, but her impeccable performances at Liverpool confirmed her status as one of the country’s top gymnasts.

Jordan Chiles and Carey each added two individual medals to their team gold, with Carey winning gold on vault and Chiles winning silver. Carey had been projected to win an Olympic medal on this apparatus last summer, but she slipped on the track in the final and had to bail out her difficult jump.

At the world championships, all-around champion Rebeca Andrade of Brazil would have been the favorite for gold on vault, but she did not advance to the final after a stroke of luck, similar to the Carey’s troubles in Tokyo during the qualifying round. Carey and Andrade tied for bronze on floor on Sunday, with Britain’s Jessica Gadirova taking the gold.

Chiles, an Olympian from Tokyo, had a strong showing in the team final as the only American to contribute on all four apparatus. She went on to win silver medals on vault and floor.

Skye Blakely, 17, has a tough beam routine and fell in the final, finishing fifth with a 13.300. Without the one-point deduction for the fall, Blakely would have had the better score ahead of gold medalist Hazuki Watanabe of Japan.

Malone won the only medal for the American men with his gold on high bar, the first for the United States on the apparatus since Kurt Thomas in 1979. Malone’s score of 14.800 edged out Japanese star Daiki Hashimoto (14.700), the Olympic all-around and high bar champion.

Malone, the 2021 world bronze medalist on high bar, is the two-time reigning U.S. all-around champion and will lead this team for years to come. The 22-year-old finished fourth in the all-around at Liverpool, narrowly missing out on a podium finish.

Behind Malone, 18-year-old Asher Hong made a strong debut at his first world championships, placing sixth in the all-around. It was the first time two American men had finished in the top 10 at the world championships since 2003.

The American men had a disappointing performance in the team final, finishing fifth despite medal hopes entering the competition. With Russia banned due to that country’s invasion of Ukraine, the Americans had a better than usual chance of winning a medal, but they made some major mistakes in the final.

The other American men in the apparatus finals did not medal. Stephen Nedoroscik, the 2021 pommel horse world champion, placed fifth on this apparatus, and Donnell Whittenburg was eighth on rings.

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