“Fierce” Ch. 9 + 10

These chapters talk about 2011 Nationals and Worlds!

– Aly liked her “Hava Nagila” routine because the crowd could clap along to the music. In addition, 1.5 DOUBLE ARABIAN PUNCH FRONT!

– At the 2011 American Cup, Aly performed in front of her grandma (Bubbie) who was being treated for lung cancer. Bubbie was very proud and already told her friends that Aly was going to the Olympics!

– Even before Worlds that year, people were talking about the potential of the American team and looking ahead towards London, and Aly began to feel the pressure.

– The live broadcast of Nationals caused the competition to have a lot of delays. Since NBC didn’t want two top contenders to be competing at the same time, gymnasts were often waiting several minutes on the podium before they could actually perform, and the pauses for commercial breaks were even longer.

– Aly saw Rebeca’s injury while waiting to go up on beam. She said that “her cries of agony scared me”, and it made her lose her concentration. She could hear Rebecca crying in the background right before competing and felt terrified while mounting the beam. After grabbing the beam she became even more distracted and her thoughts were all over the place. Then the crowd started clapping because Rebecca was being wheeled out, which distracted her even more, and she went overtime. When she was done, she had “never been so happy to be done with anything in my life”. Marta came up to her and said “Just this once, you have an excuse”.

– Aly had a crush on Jake Dalton and she and Jordyn had a little rivarly for his attention lolol!

– Aly knew that she’d probably need an Amanar if she wanted to make the Olympic team, but she was still scared from her fall at 2010 Classics, and she also heard about Aliya’s injury which freaked her out even more.

– In Tokyo, Aly and Talia Chiarelli were staying at the same hotel. She was shocked that the Canadian team got a whole day off, because Marta would always make them do some conditioning in the hotel hallways.

– The WAG and MAG teams played pranks on each other to pass the time and they loved to ding dong ditch each other!

– Mihai was the only coach who had his gymnasts do a full floor routine every day (the others did one every other day). She was a little jealous of the other girls but trusted Mihai.

– Two days before qualifications, Aly landed her dismount short and her ankles gave out. She started freaking out about her chances of competing in Tokyo and at the Olympics next year. Right after, Alicia tore her Achilles and Aly started panicking even more and felt like she was going to faint or vomit. While Alicia was being carried out of the room, they made eye contact and started laughing hysterically. Alicia said “Look at my foot! It’s so shriveled up!” 

– About an hour later, Marta made Aly get up and train bars without the dismount because bars don’t require using your feet. Aly was still in pain and was confused about why they didn’t let her rest. One day after practice, Marta told Aly that she could take a nap but right after she would have to run up and down the hallway to show her that she was ok. Mihai was convinced she was fine, but Marta made her run even more.

– Before marching out for the tf, the girls were standing in a circle reciting the Pledge of Allegiance because a few days ago McKayla asked if they would “play the Pledge of Allegiance” when they marched out to announce every country. She started humming the national anthem and everyone burst out laughing because she had gotten the two mixed up. 

– Aly and McKayla kept their medals in their laptop cases