Saturday, June 4, 2016

Miss USA 2016 Review: South Carolina - Miss 52 USA

The 65th Miss USA will be crowned on June 5th at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Olivia Jordan from Oklahoma will crown her successor at the conclusion of the event. This year, 52 young women have been battling it out for the crown. As always, the 50 states and the District of Columbia will appear on stage, but this year Miss 52 USA was selected by fans of the pageant. In a twist of fate, that contestant happens to be the girl who as Olivia Jordan's first runner-up in Oklahoma took over the title and lost out on her dream at competing on the Miss USA stage before this new element was added to the competition. This also means that Oklahoma will have two delegates in the running for the title. The 52 young women have been in Las Vegas for the last 10 days, but only one of them will move to New York City to spend the next year working for the Miss Universe Organization as Miss USA 2016. Here are our final thoughts about this year's group:


South Carolina: Leah Lawson *****

I must admit. I overlooked Leah, but once she hit Vegas, she proved that she was ready to fight for the title. She has been looking fantastic throughout the whole competition and she was on fire during the preliminaries. Expect her to do really well.

South Dakota: Madison McKeowan ******

Underdog alert! South Dakota has only placed twice at Miss USA and the last time was in 1974. Madison pretty much ruled the preliminaries in my opinion. And if there’s any justice in this pageant, she will make it. And if she can replicate her preliminary performances, she might win the whole thing. Wouldn’t that make a nice story!

Tennessee: Hope Stephens ***

She’s young, she’s fresh and she’s got that girl-next-door vibe going on. Hope has been on my radar since she was crown. Her evening gown performance  was slightly better than her swimsuit performance for me, but she was strong in both.

Texas: Daniella Rodriguez *****

When Daniella was crowned Miss Texas USA, I was not a fan. But she proved me wrong. She came prepared, ready to fight for the crown and hungry to win… in typical Texas style. There are fierce competitors out there, but this girl is not going to let that stop her. Watch out for her.

Utah: Teale Murdock **

Utah usually does quite well and Teale, who won her state title on her eighth attempt, is a firm fan favorite. Will they vote her into the top 15?

Vermont: Neely Fortune *

Neely seems like a fun, strong, modern woman. It was enjoyable to watch her compete on the Miss USA stage.

Virginia: Desi Williams ******

Don’t count Desi out. She didn’t quite slay as I expected, but she’s beautiful enough to go to the final stages of the competition. And as a former Miss America competitor, don’t expect her to stumble in the Q&A. That might help her take the crown for Virginia.

Washington: Kelsey Schmidt *

Kelsey was originally the runner-up in her state, but took over the title when the winner was forced to resign. She’s photogenic, but quite raw on stage.

West Virginia: Nichole Green ***

Nichole has one of the most beautiful faces of the competition. She didn’t quite make an impact on stage, but she was strong in evening gown. It would be nice to see her make the cut.

Wisconsin: Kate Redeker ******

Kate is one of the major favorites for the title. She is the strongest bet Wisconsin has sent in years. She is young, cool, fresh and gorgeous. If she wins, she will be the youngest Miss USA since 1974. Now the big question is: will she be able to handle the pressure?

Wyoming: Autumn Olsen **

Autumn has a really beautiful face. She was stronger in gown than in swimsuit. She does not carry a powerful sash, but let’s hope for the best.

Miss 52 USA: Alexandra Miller *****

Alexandra was the lucky winner of Miss 52 USA. Wait, what am I talking about. She was the only logical choice. Her Miss USA dream was pretty much over until Miss 52 USA was announced and she knew it and came ready to give it her all. She was absolutely on fire on stage and showed that not only does she deserve to be there, but she’s also going to fight for a spot in the top 5.

Photos: Miss USA 

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