Don't mess with Alicia
PHILADELPHIA -- Alicia Sacramone, who has been the emotional leader of the U.S. gymnastics team for the last two years, has attitude to spare. She is 20, has spent a year in college at Brown and she had no trouble making her feelings known when she received the yellow flag indicative of a step out of bounds on her floor exercise routine tonight.
"It was brought to my attention that I gave the judge the death stare," Sacramone said. "Maybe I had a big toe on the line. I didn't think I was out of bounds."
Sacramone said she used her displeasure with the call to focus her on her next event, the vault, where she hit a perfect landing and scored 15.900, second-highest total of the night.
"Yeah, it was kind of an anger-fueled thing," Sacramone said. "I guess it worked."
Sacramone does only three of the four events (she skips the uneven bars), and it is the general consensus that her strong vaulting and perky floor routine will get her on the team. It is a big change from four years ago when Sacramone missed qualifying for the Olympic trials.
"It's been a long four years," she said. "So I think I did have extra attitude going out there tonight."
-- Diane Pucin
Photo: Alicia Sacramone competes in the floor exercise. At the end of it, she received a yellow flag when a judge ruled she had stepped out of bounds. Credit: Nick Laham/Getty Images