Hawkeyes Head to Big Ten Championships

March 23, 2005

THIS WEEK — The seventh-ranked University of Iowa men’s gymnastics team will travel to Ann Arbor, MI, Friday and Saturday to compete in the Big Ten Championships. Team competition and all-around performances will start Friday at 7 p.m. Individual event finals will take place Saturday at 7 p.m. The conference championships will be held at Crisler Arena. All-session tickets are $7 for adults and $4 for students.

IOWA IN BIG TEN HISTORY — The Hawkeyes have won the Big Ten title six times and have tied for first once. Two of those titles have come under Coach Tom Dunn. Iowa won their first title under Dunn in 1986. Iowa’s most recent title came in 1998 when the Hawkeyes finished a perfect 8-0.

SCOUTING THE BIG TEN — All six Big Ten teams are ranked in the top-10 nationally, including top-ranked Ohio State, No. 3 Illinois, No. 4 Penn State, No. 5 Michigan, No. 7 IOWA, and No. 10 Minnesota. Five of the nation’s top ten all-arounders will be competing, including Penn State’s Luis Vargas (No. 1), Illinois’ Wesley Haagensen (No. 2), Minnesota’s Guillermo Alvarez (No. 3), and Iowa’s Michael Reavis (No. 6) and Linas Gaveika (No. 10). Big Ten athletes hold at least six top-ten spots on all individual events. Also, six Big Ten athletes hold No. 1 rankings on individual events, including the all-around.

IOWA VS. THE BIG TEN — The Hawkeyes recorded a dual victory over Minnesota, but fell to Illinois and Michigan. Iowa opened the 2005 season with a fourth-place finish at the Windy City Invitational, behind Illinois, Ohio State and Michigan. Minnesota finished fifth.

LAST YEAR AT BIG TENS — The Hawkeyes placed fourth at last year’s Big Ten Championships with a team total of 216.8, advancing four gymnasts into the event finals. Michael McNamara took second on floor exercise with a score of 9.475. Senior Eric Block was second on parallel bars (8.925) and seventh on pommel horse (8.3). Linas Gaveika took fourth on pommel horse (9.2) and sixth on horizontal bar (8.7), while Michael Reavis tied for third on vault (9.4) and was fourth on horizontal bar (9.4).

IOWA IN THE RANKINGS — In the latest GymInfo rankings (March 21), the Hawkeyes fell from sixth to seventh nationally. As a team, the Hawkeyes are ranked in the top 10 in all six individual events. The Hawkeyes are the fifth-ranked team on floor exercise, sixth on horizontal bar, ninth on both pommel horse and vault, and 10th on rings and parallel bars.

NATIONALLY-RANKED INDIVIDUALS — Hawkeye junior Michael Reavis leads the Hawkeyes in the rankings. Reavis is fourth on floor exercise, fifth on vault, and sixth on both horizontal bar and the all-around. Senior Linas Gaveika is ranked ninth on horizontal bar, 10th in the all-around, and 14th on pommel horse. Junior Michael McNamara is eighth on floor exercise while senior Kenny Lin is 12th on rings. Sophomore Matt Beiler is tied for 18th on parallel bars.

HAWKS HIT THE RECORD BOOKS — The 2005 Hawkeye squad smashed the record books, setting six individual and two team marks. On vault, Iowa posted a record 37.4 at the West Point Open. The Hawkeyes then set a rings record of 37.4 against Illinois. Junior Michael Reavis holds Iowa records on floor exercise (9.725), vault (9.7), and in the all-around (54.825). Senior Kenny Lin broke his previous record of 9.55 with a 9.7 performance on rings against Illinois. Sophomore Matt Beiler scored a record-breaking 9.4 on parallel bars against Oklahoma.

REAVIS SHINES FOR THE HAWKEYES — Junior Michael Reavis had an impressive season. He is nationally ranked in three events and the all-around heading into the Big Ten Championships. He is currently fourth on floor exercise, fifth on vault, tied for sixth on horizontal bar and sixth in the all-around. He also holds three University of Iowa records, all of which he set this season. Against Oklahoma, Reavis scored a 9.725 on floor exercise and an all-around score of 54.825. He also holds the vault record of 9.7, which he set against Minnesota.

SENIORS SAY GOODBYE WITH A WIN — Iowa sent its seniors out with a win in their final home meet, dominating the ninth-ranked Minnesota Golden Gophers 217.325-213.4. The Hawkeyes won four event titles, crowned three individual event champions, and broke two University of Iowa records. Senior Kenny Lin tied for second on rings with a score of 9.4. He also added a seventh place finish on parallel bars (8.5). Linas Gaveika, despite being injured, took fourth on pommel horse, tied for sixth on floor exercise, finished eighth on parallel bars and took fourth in the all-around. Jason Dixon also performed well in his last dual meet as a Hawkeye, taking fifth on rings. Shawn Stone tied for ninth on floor exercise.

BEILER CONSISTENT FOR THE HAWKEYES — Despite a slow start, Iowa sophomore Matt Beiler has emerged as a consistent all-around competitor. He is currently ranked 18th nationally on parallel bars and holds the University of Iowa record in the event, scoring a 9.4 at Oklahoma. Beiler set a personal season best of 9.3 on rings at Illinois. He also set personal season bests on floor exercise (8.9) and horizontal bar (9.3) against Minnesota. He was crowned parallel bars champion against Minnesota and tied for first in the same event against Illinois-Chicago. He will be a Hawkeye to watch heading into the Big Ten Championships.

QUOTING HEAD COACH Tom Dunn — “The team looks as good as it has all year. The week without competition or classes allowed us time to focus on some problem areas and generally polish things up. My only concern is a foot injury Michael Reavis sustained at Oklahoma. It could prevent him from competing on floor exercise and vault. I’m hopeful he will be ready to go by Friday.”

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