Two Bruin Signees To Compete For Canada At World Gymnastics Championships

Aug. 28, 2007

UCLA signees Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs and Marci Bernholtz will compete for Team Canada at the 2007 World Gymnastics Championships in Stuttgart, Germany on Sept. 1-9. The Top 12 teams at the World Championships will qualify a full team to the 2008 Olympic Games.

Hopfner-Hibbs, who will defer enrollment at UCLA until the 2008-09 school year, won the bronze medal on balance beam at the 2006 World Championships, becoming the first Canadian woman ever to win a medal at the World Championships. Also that year, she won the 2006 Canadian all-around and floor exercise national titles. In 2005, she won the Canadian national balance beam title. This will be her third World Championships appearance.

Bernholtz, who will be competing in her second consecutive World Championships, is the 2007 Canadian national champion on the uneven bars and the bronze medalist in the all-around and on balance beam. She was also a double bronze-medalist at the 2005 National Championships, placing third in the all-around and on floor exercise, and an alternate at the 2004 Olympic Games. Bernholtz is likely to defer enrollment until 2008-09.

The Canadian women will begin competition with the team preliminaries on Sunday, Sept. 2. Team Canada will compete in the last subdivision and will start on the uneven bars. The Top 8 teams from Sunday's qualifying round will qualify for the Team Finals on Wednesday, Sept. 5.

Also at stake on Sunday are individual berths in the all-around final and the apparatus finals. The Top 24 all-around finishers from Sunday's qualifying round will advance to the all-around final on Friday, Sept. 7. There is a maximum of two all-around finalists per country. The Top 8 gymnasts on each apparatus from Sunday's qualifying round will advance to the apparatus finals, which will take place on Sept. 8 and 9.

The women's team and all-around finals are scheduled to be televised by NBC on a delayed basis on Oct. 7, but fans can view the event live via a free webcast on WCSN.com. UCLA senior gymnast Tasha Schwikert, a two-time World medalist, 2000 U.S. Olympian and 2005 NCAA all-around champion, will be doing color commentary. Live coverage of the medal rounds begins with the women's team finals on Sept. 5 and concludes on the last day of the individual event finals on Sept. 9. For more information, go to www.wcsn.com.

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