6 Iowa Gymnasts Earn NCAA Championship Bids

April 14, 2011

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The University of Iowa men’s gymnastics team posted its second highest team score of the season in Session II of the NCAA National Qualifier in St. John Arena, and had six gymnasts advance to the NCAA Championships. The No. 11 Hawkeyes posted a 348.960 to place fifth out of six, topping No. 10 Nebraska for the second time this season.

The team score was just short of Iowa’s mark set in a triangular with Minnesota and Nebraska, where the Hawkeyes set the school record with a 351.800. Iowa finished with ten season best individual scores.

Senior Ben Ketelsen, senior Mike Jiang, sophomore Anton Gryshayev, sophomore Matt McGrath, sophomore Javier Balboa and freshman Sam Wright qualified to compete individually at the NCAA Championships this Friday. If they place within the top-10 on their respective events, they will compete again Saturday in the individual event finals.

“This was an ideal ending to my first season as head coach here. I thought it was our best meet of the year, and this was a great first step to turning this program around,” said head coach JD Reive. “I’m very pleased with our guys.”

McGrath earned Iowa’s top individual finish, placing fourth overall in the session on vault. McGrath scored a 16.250, which set the team mark for highest score on the event this season. The score was also just .05 away from the school record set by Geoff Reins in 2008.

A duo of Iowa seniors paced the Hawkeyes to a 55.650 team score on pommel horse, as Jiang and Ketelsen advanced on the event. Jiang placed eighth overall with a 14.550, which pushed him through to the NCAA Championships for the second straight year. Jiang is a returning All-American on the event. Ketelsen’s routine scored a 14.200 to place 12th overall.

Gryshayev qualified on rings, placing ninth overall with a 15.150. The score was his second highest of the season, runner-up to his school record mark of 15.200 set earlier in the year. Gryshayev owns the top five scores in rings in school history.

A season best score on parallel bars pushed Balboa through to the NCAA Championships as well. Balboa scored a 14.850 to place 13th overall.

Wright qualified on horizontal bar with a score of 14.350, placing 16th overall. Wright’s best score on the event this season is just over a tenth higher at the 14.500 mark.

“All the guys we have advancing have a total shot to getting in there Saturday for the event finals, too,” said Reive. “I’m excited to have them moving on. They’ll take the same approach they had today, and hopefully put up some more good scores.”

Ketelsen also led Iowa on floor exercise with a season best score of 14.650 to place 18th in the session. McGrath added a 14.400, and senior John Haines scored a season best 14.250.

Junior Adam Wilson paced the Black and Gold on pommel horse as well with a 13.800. Gryshayev added a 13.100.

Aside from qualifying on parallel bars, Balboa also had a great routine on still rings with a season best score of 14.900. Freshman Angelo Bronzino also added a season best on the event, scoring a 14.740. McGrath finished with a 14.700.

Jiang also hit a strong routine on vault with a 15.450. Sophomore Todd Becker and Ketelsen also scored a 15.100 on the event.

McGrath added another strong run on parallel bars also with a season best score of 14.700. Junior Zach Cazabon (14.550), Jiang (14.550), sophomore Broderick Shemansky (14.450) and redshirt freshman Jack McClay (14.450) also provided strong routines.

Balboa (14.00), Ketelsen (13.900) and Shemansky (13.750) paced Iowa on horizontal bar as well.

The six gymnasts moving on for Iowa advanced via placing within the top six individually out of gymnasts from non-qualifying teams from both sessions. Friday will be the team and all-around finals, and the top ten gymnasts on each event will advance to the individual event finals on Saturday. The top eight gymnasts on each event after Saturday’s action are named All-Americans.

Action will begin at 6 p.m. (CT) both days. ESPN2 will be broadcasting Friday’s action on tape-delay.


Team Standings 1. No. 2 Stanford, 366.100 2. No. 3 California, 361.800 3. No. 6 Michigan, 360.650 4. No. 7 Ohio State, 353.750 5. No. 11 IOWA, 348.950 6. No. 10 Nebraska, 345.450

Individual Event Results


1. Sam Mikulak (Mich), 15.650 2. Eddie Pevev (Stanford), 15.600 3. Tim Gentry (Stanford), 15.450 18. Ben Ketelsen (IOWA), 14.650 21. Matt McGrath (IOWA), 14.400 29. John Haines (IOWA), 14.250 34. Todd Becker (IOWA), 13.950


1. Adam Hamers (Mich), 15.200 2. Glen Ishino (Cali), 15.100 3. John Martin (Stanford), 14.900 8. Mike Jiang (IOWA), 14.550 12. Ben Ketelsen (IOWA), 14.200 18. Adam Wilson (IOWA), 13.800 30. Anton Gryshayev (IOWA), 13.100


1. Brandon Wynn (OSU), 16.300 2. Andrew Vance (Michigan), 15.500 3. Anthony Ingrelli (Nebraska), 15.450 9. Anton Gryshayev (IOWA), 15.150 14. Javier Balboa (IOWA), 14.900 18. Angelo Bronzino (IOWA), 14.750 20. Matt McGrath (IOWA), 14.700


1. Alex Buscaglia (Stanford), 16.400 2. Steven Lacombe (Cali), 16.350 2. Christian Monteclaro (Cali), 16.350 4. Matt McGrath (IOWA), 16.250 20. Mike Jiang (IOWA), 15.450 32. Todd Becker (IOWA), 15.100 32. Ben Ketelsen (IOWA), 15.100


1. Ryan Lieberman (Stanford), 15.650 2. Sam Mikulak (Mich), 15.500 3. Nicholas Noone (Stanford), 15.400 13. Javier Balboa (IOWA), 14.850 19. Matt McGrath (IOWA), 14.700 24. Zach Cazabon (IOWA), 14.550 24. Mike Jiang (IOWA), 14.550 26. Broderick Shemansky (IOWA), 14.450 26. Jack McClay (IOWA), 14.450


1. Alex Buscaglia (Stanford), 15.750 2. Thomas Kelly (Mich), 15.550 3. Bryan del Castillo (Cali), 15.200 16. Sam Wright (IOWA), 14.350 21. Javier Balboa (IOWA), 14.000 23. Ben Ketelsen (IOWA), 13.900 30. Broderick Shemansky (IOWA), 13.750