Bubble Watch: Multiple Athletes Fight for Final Three Spots, as Anikha Greer Vaults from 19th to 11th on Event Six in Orlando
When it comes to Semifinal competition, we have grown so accustomed to paying attention to the top five on the leaderboard, as that has long been the CrossFit Games cut line.
This year, that’s no longer the case. With 11 spots available for women at the North America East Semifinal in Orlando, FL, the most important area of the leaderboard to pay attention to, especially on Day Three, is the bubble. By this we mean the area just inside and just outside that 11th place position. And in some cases, even the area well outside of 11th.
Case in point: Anikha Greer entered the day in 19th overall, 51 points out of a qualifying position. But after putting forth a huge performance in Event Six, winning her heat and placing third overall, she vaulted herself well into the bubble. She sits in 11th heading into the final event of the weekend.
The bubble before Event Six: Heading into Day Three, the athletes sitting in ninth to 13th were Amanda Fischer, Paige Semenza, Sydney Wells, Ashleigh Wosny and Keara Napoli, and only 19 points separated Fischer in ninth and Napoli in 13th. But it only took a single event—Event Six on Saturday morning—to shake the bubble up.
- In fact, three of the five athletes who were on the bubble going in finished outside of the top 24 in Event Six—Fischer (50th), Wosny (25th) and Napoli (32nd), knocking both Fischer and Napoli outside of the top 13 entirely, while Wosny dropped to 13th.
- Meanwhile, Semenza and Wells both fared well, but not exceptionally—17th and 12th respectively, helping secure their qualifying positions. Wells heads into the final event in eighth and Semenza in ninth.
The bubble after Event Six: Joining Semenza, Greer, Neal and Wosny in the 9th to 13th place bubble positions is Caroline Stanley, who fell from eighth to 10th after a 38th place finish on Event Six. They will arguably be the athletes to pay the most attention to in the final event.
The big picture: In a larger Semifinal field than ever before—50 athletes—and a jam-packed leaderboard, even with just one test to go, those final three spots are still really anyone’s game. Well, not anyone’s game, but at least five athletes, maybe more, have a legitimate chance to snag them.
We have heard it too many times before, but in this new format, and with only 20 points separating Fischer in 16th and Greer in 11th, it really never is over until it’s over.