June 5, 2004
Nashville, TN - Former UCLA All-American and two-time NCAA champion Mohini Bhardwaj (1998-2001) has qualified for the U.S. Olympic Trials after a 12th-place finish at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships. Bhardwaj recorded a 36.6 in the second day of all-around competition, for a two-day total of 73.7.
Bhardwaj, who is coached by UCLA assistant coach Chris Waller, recorded a 9.5 on vault for her highest event total of the day. It was also the second-highest vault score of the evening. Bhardwaj also improved upon her bars total of Thursday with an 8.95. On beam, she scored a 9.0 after a few bobbles, and she held onto the final qualifying Trials spot with a 9.15 on floor exercise in the last rotation.
This will be Bhardwaj's second Olympic Trials. She placed 10th at the 1996 Trials. She also made the U.S. National Team for the eighth time in her career.
Thursday's all-around preliminary score was combined with Saturday's all-around final score to determine the all-around champion. The top 14 athletes were named to the 2004-05 Senior National Team, while the top 12 athletes will advance to the 2004 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Gymnastics, June 24-27 in Anaheim, CA.
Also competing at the Olympic Trials is Bruin alum Steve McCain, who placed seventh with an all-around total of 111.225. The Top 8 all-arounders in the men's competition qualified for the Olympic Trials.