Madison Kocian has long been considered Team USA’s secret weapon when it comes to the uneven bars– the US’s weakest event. And at today’s team finals for women’s gymnastics, the 19-year-old received the highest individual bars score– an impressive 15.866— which contributed to Team USA’s cumulative score of 184.897. Madison’s routine certainly helped Team USA win the team gold, and on Sunday, she will be competing in the event finals for bars.
At Tuesday’s all-around finals, Team USA earned a bar score of 14.499, placing them about .3 above the 2nd place bars team, Russia. Reigning Olympic champion, Gabby Douglas, earned a 15.766 on the event, and projected Olympic champion, Simone Biles, came in with a 14.8. Madison Kocian’s 15.866 was the highest on bars for the evening– not all that surprising, considering she’s a 2015 world champion on the event.
Kocian is a Dallas native, and began training in gymnastics at age five. She quickly made her way through the junior levels, and joined the US Junior National Team in 2009, at age 12. In 2013, Kocian made her debut in the senior level. She first competed in the US Classic, where she placed 7th all-around, and 2nd on bars, with a 14.45. In 2015, Kocian won bars at the Secret US Classic and the World Championships, and earned recognition as being one of seven Americans to win the world championships on the uneven bars. Madison committed to UCLA for the fall of 2016, and is the only member of the ‘Final Five’ that has maintained her NCAA eligibility.