TV Recap: S02E02 – American Ninja Warrior Junior Kids 2020

American Ninja Warrior Junior Kids Season 2 2020, Episode 2

American Ninja Warrior Junior is back for Season 2!!!

And with a new season comes some tweaks to last season’s format.

Here’s a breakdown:

-Just like last season, ninjas will compete in three divisions: 9-10 years old, 11-12 years old, and 13-14 years old. They will compete in head to head races.

The qualifying rounds feature four ninjas per division. They will start in a seeding round, with the two fastest ninjas from that round taking on the two slowest ninjas in the knockout round.

The winners of the two knockout rounds move on to the final showdown, where the winner will move on to the quarterfinals.

-New this season: instead of waiting until the end of the season to see all the winners, there will be a quarterfinal round episode after three episodes to determine who goes on to the semifinals.

-With the new format, there will only be three quarterfinal qualifiers, so the fourth spot will be determined with the two fastest non-winners competing for a wildcard spot.

Also, Laurie Hernandez is preparing for the Olympics in the summer. So Matt and Akbar will be joined this season by paralympic athlete Victoria Arlen as co-host.

9-10 Year Old Division (Ninja Mentor: Najee Richardson)

The course: Shrinking Steps, Little Dipper, Spider Walls, Block Run, Flying Squirrel, 13 Foot Warped Wall (with two hand holds)

Seeding Round: Bo Durr vs Shae McCarl

Bo has lived on five military bases in ten years and trains on the bases to prepare for competition, while Shae, “The Tree Frog Ninja” is a climibing champion who loves the outdoors.

Bo was tentative early, while Shae looked very comfortable grabbing an early lead.

Shae’s lead only grew as she finished Sky Hooks.

Bo ended up falling before he reached the Wall as Shae made her way up the Wall with a convincing win.

Seeding Round: Logan Millard vs Lindsey Zimmerman

“Legacy Lindsey’s” mom Sandy was the first mom to ever hit a buzzer in Ninja Warrior competition while Logan’s nickname is “Lightning Logan.”

Lindsey built a strong lead through two obstacles.

The lead only grew as Lindsey reached Flying Squirrel.

The fifth obstacle was nearly disaster for Lindsey, but a one-handed save kept her run alive.

And Lindsey hit the buzzer first, but Logan kept pushing and finished the course as well.

During the break…

Knockout Round: Lindsey Zimmerman vs Bo Durr

Lindsey slipped and fell on Flying Squirrel. But Bo fell on the same obstacle, allowing Lindsey to advance to the Final Showdown.

Knockout Round: Shae McCarl vs Logan Millard

The pair was running even on the first obstacle, but Shae created some distance on the Little Dipper.

That lead only grew on the Spider Walls, just like it did for Shae in her seeding round race.

Logan stayed close behind, but he was no match for Shae.

“The Tree Frog Ninja” shaved 10 seconds off her seeding round time and advanced to the Final Showdown.

11-12 Year old Division (Ninja Mentor: Jessie Graff)

The course: Shrinking Steps, Little Dipper, Double Tilt Ladders, Block Run, Wing Nuts, 13 foot Warped Wall (one hand hold)

Seeding Round: Luke Beckstrand vs Collin Cella

Luke’s brother Kai won the 11-12 year old division last season, while Collin Cella was last year’s 9-10 year old champion.

Both ninjas came out fast with Collin taking a slight lead on Little Dipper.

Luke tried to make a comeback skipping steps on the Double Tilt Ladders. But Collin swung from the beginning of the 2nd ladder to the platform and increased his lead.

Luke kept the pressure on, but it was no match for Collin, who hit the buzzer first despite being under the weather recently.

During the break…

Seeding Round: Aubriella Hairston vs Emily Keener

Emily came up short on the Little Dipper and Aubriella finished the course.

Knockout Round: Aubriella Hairston vs Luke Beckstrand

The “Tye Dye Ninja” lives with her dad in a log cabin out in the country in Alabama. She travels the country with her dad in his hippie van.

Aubriella got caught up in the net on Little Dipper.

That slip allowed Luke, who kept a strong pace, to build a lead.

Aubriella kept the pressure on, but Luke was too much as he hit the buzzer and advanced to the Final Showdown.

Knockout Round: Collin Cella vs Emily Keener

“The Course Crusher” isn’t feeling any better, but he’s going to push through and try to advance to the Final Showdown anyway.

Emily took the early lead as Collin continued to struggle with the course.

Whatever his illness was, it was enough for Collin to pull himself out of the race.

Emily made it all the way to the buzzer and advanced to the Final Showdown.

Sadly, for Collin, he is out of the competition this season.

13-14 year old Division (Ninja Mentor: Meagan Martin)

The course: Floating Steps, Little Dipper, Crazy Cliffhanger, Block Run, Sky Hooks, 13-foot Warped Wall (no hand holds)

Seeding Round: Nate Pardo vs Devan Alexander

Nate was the 13-14 year old division runner up last season who’s been training while wearing a 50 pound weight vest, while Devan is an expert chess player who switched from chess competitions to ninja competitions.

Both ninjas started fast, but Devan got going so fast that the bar popped off the track.

Nate had the win, but he finished the course anyway, hitting the buzzer and setting a tone for the division.

Seeding Round: Peace Lopez vs Molly Haywood

Peace was voted class president in a landslide vote while Molly is a pole vaulter.

The pair was even going into Crazy Cliffhanger.

Peace had a slight lead after both finished the third obstacle.

Peace kept that lead all the way to the middle of the fifth obstacle when Molly passed her on the dismount.

Molly made her way up the Warped Wall and took the win.

During the break…

Knockout Round: Molly Haywood vs Devan Alexander

Devan rebounded from his seeding round defeat, advancing to the Final Showdown with a convincing win.

But Molly moved into second on the wildcard leaderboard, trailing on Jonathan Godbout.

Knockout Round: Nate Pardo vs. Peace Lopez

Par for the course, Nate flew through the course.

But Peace stayed right behind him the whole run.

No surprise that Nate advanced to the Final Showdown.

But Peace set a personal best and moved into 2nd on the Wildcard leaderboard with her run.

9-10 year old Final Showdown: Lindsey Zimmerman vs Shae McCarl

The ninjas were even through two obstacles.

The pair stayed even going into the Flying Squirrel.

It was on the fifth obstacle that Lindsey took the lead she would take up the Warped Wall.

And by a few tenths, Lindsey hit the buzzer and advanced to the quarterfinals.

But Shae’s time does have her sitting in a position for a Wildcard spot.

11-12 year old Final Showdown: Luke Beckstrand vs Emily Keener

Luke built a big lead early, but Emily stayed close behind.

Luke kept his lead all the way to the Wingnuts, where Emily began closing the gap.

Another close finish saw Luke hit the buzzer just before Emily did.

But Emily’s time was strong enough to move her atop the Wildcard standings.

13-14 year old Final Showdown: Devan Alexander vs Nate Pardo

Nate comes out fast as usual.

But unlike their first race, Devan stayed close behind.

And that pressure proved detrimental to Nate as he got stuck on the last ring on Sky Hooks.

Devan passed him on the last obstacle and hit the buzzer first, pulling off the upset.

That’s bad news for the rest of the competition as Nate is now holding one of the two wildcard spots with a really strong time.

Your Quarterfinalists:

9-10 year old division: Lindsey Zimmerman

11-12 year old division: Luke Beckstrand

13-14 year old division: Devan Alexander

Wildcard Qualifiers (for now):

9-10 year old division:   Shae McCarl

                                    Bradi Brownfield

11-12 year old division:  Emily Keener

                                     Harry Robinson

13-14 year old division:  Jonathan Godbout

                                     Nate Pardo

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