Shilese Jones will miss Paris Olympics after injury at gymnastics trials

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MINNEAPOLIS — Nobody pictured Paris without Shilese Jones.

Team USA suffered a slew of devastating injuries in quick succession at the U.S. Olympic Gymnastics Trials, including one that will take Jones out of the Paris Games.

USA Gymnastics announced Saturday that, after evaluation, Jones will not be continuing through to the final day of trials Sunday, slashing her hopes of making the Paris team.

Jones, a 21-year-old from Seattle, was a near-lock for the Olympic team after winning six world championship medals in the past two years.

While warming up on the vault at Friday’s trials, Jones landed short and immediately cradled her knee.

She is the third frontrunner for the Paris team to suffer a season-ending injury this week in Minneapolis. Skye Blakely ruptured her Achilles in training on Wednesday and Kayla DiCello suffered the same injury at the top of Friday’s competition.

Jones received medical attention after her vault and was carried off the competition floor, but all appeared to be well when she re-entered the arena. She attempted another warm-up vault, but balked, unable to complete her run.

Still, Jones rallied through visible grimaces of pain and hit her best event, the uneven bars. She earned the highest score of the night with a 14.675.

Jones performed a slightly easier routine than usual, omitting a difficult skill, a laid-out Jaeger, at the top. The dismount was solid, but she limped off the floor after the impact to her injured knee.

After that routine, she scratched the rest of the meet.

Jones also withdrew last month from the U.S. Gymnastics Championships in Fort Worth, nursing an unrelated shoulder injury. She filed a petition with USA Gymnastics to compete at trials, which was approved.

In 2021, Jones just missed the Tokyo Olympic team, finishing in 10th at trials. Later that year she lost her father, who had encouraged her to try once more for an Olympic berth.

Her only all-around showing this year was the Core Hydration Classic in May, where Jones solidified herself as Team USA’s strongest asset behind Simone Biles, finishing second in the all-around competition and winning the uneven bars.

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