Fort Worth scores perfect 10 as Dickies Arena hosts NCAA Women’s Gymnastics

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The University of Oklahoma walked off with the team title, but once again folks in Fort Worth proved a big winner as the NCAA Women’s Gymnastics Championships were held April 14-16 at Dickies Arena.

“The event was fantastic!” exclaimed Fort Worth Sports Commission Executive Director Jason Sands. “Oklahoma ultimately came out on top as the champion but it was close the whole way as Utah, Florida and Auburn gave them a run for their money.

“I can tell you that the NCAA – along with athletes and coaches – was extremely happy with the arena and the overall experience Fort Worth provided.”

Sands said the event had an estimated impact of more than $4 million on the local economy with more than 4,500 hotel rooms booked. The semifinals were broadcast on ESPN2 and ABC broadcast the championship session, once again giving the city and the arena national exposure.

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The competitors gave those in attendance plenty to remember as Oklahoma came from behind to edge Florida by a score of 198.2000 to 198.0875. It was Oklahoma’s fifth national championship since 2014, along with four runner-up finishes since 2010.

The meet also featured a pair of perfect 10 scores in floor competition by all-around champion Trinity Thomas of Florida. She had the only two 10s in the meet.

Also exciting the crowd was Olympic gold medalist Suni Lee of Auburn.

Sands said another part of the event that was a big success was the community outreach program between the NCAA and the Fort Worth ISD called Readers Become Leaders. This program works to address the literacy issue facing kids by encouraging and incentivizing them to read and log the minutes read each week. Minutes are accumulated for a contest among schools.

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Sands said 38 schools and 14,788 students participated this year.

“Those students read an astounding 14,940,594 minutes, breaking a NCAA record for most minutes read by a single school district,” Sands said.

Additionally, as part of the program, 6,750 books were secured and distributed to participating schools and students in the FWISD, Sands said.

In all, he called the NCAA Women’s Gymnastics Championship an overwhelming success. 

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“We heard time and time again from athletes, coaches and fans alike how much they loved Dickies Arena and how much fun they had in our community,” Sands said. “This truly was a collaborative effort with our partners and Dickies Arena and Texas Woman’s University, and we are looking forward to hosting the NCAA again next year.”

Sands said the event had “a profound impact on our community – both from the economic side of the equation and also the community side.”

This was the third consecutive NCAA Women’s Gymnastics Championships to be held in Fort Worth. The 2019 event was at the Fort Worth Convention Center and last year’s competition was at Dickies Arena. The 2020 meet was scheduled for Dickies but was canceled because of COVID-19.

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