U.S. gymnast MyKayla Skinner performs on the vault during the gymnastics women’s apparatus final at the Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

Natacha Pisarenko/AP


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Natacha Pisarenko/AP


U.S. gymnast MyKayla Skinner performs on the vault during the gymnastics women’s apparatus final at the Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

Natacha Pisarenko/AP

TOKYO — U.S. gymnast MyKayla Skinner has won a silver medal in the individual gymnastics final for the vault – a competition she wasn’t expecting to take part in at the Tokyo Olympics.

Skinner, 24, was tapped to compete in the vault after Simone Biles, the greatest gymnast in the world, withdrew from the competition to focus on her mental health.

Rebeca Andrade of Brazil took the gold medal, and Yeo Seojeong of South Korea took bronze.

Rebeca Andrade of Team Brazil won gold in the Women’s Vault Final on Sunday.

Jamie Squire/Getty Images


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Jamie Squire/Getty Images


Rebeca Andrade of Team Brazil won gold in the Women’s Vault Final on Sunday.

Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Skinner had already given interviews talking about hanging up her leotard for the last time. She’s moving to Utah and is pursuing a degree in journalism, with the goal of being a sports broadcaster. “For me, I’m just really excited to have a life and then maybe start a family,” she told People. “We’ll just kind of see where life takes me.”

But not before two more vaults.

She executed both cleanly. The first, with a very high degree of difficulty, is known as a Cheng. The score on that vault was slightly higher than her second. She ultimately landed with a combined total score of 14.916.

Her teammate Jade Carey, 21, shook her head after a rocky first vault. She appeared to pull out of a more difficult move after she was off in the steps leading into it, and ended with a score for her first vault of 11.933. On her second vault, she was hit with a two-point penalty, and ended with a combined score of 12.416.

It was likely disappointing after qualifying for the event with a score of 15.166. Afterwards, she appeared emotional and hugged Skinner.

Later today, U.S. gymnast Sunisa Lee, the individual all-around champion, will compete at the uneven bars individual final.





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