April 16, 2011
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COLUMBUS, Ohio – University of Iowa sophomore Matt McGrath placed fifth on vault at the individual event finals on the final day of the men’s gymnastics NCAA Championships in St. John Arena to become an All-American.
The Hawkeye phenom scored a 15.900 on the event to place fifth, as the top eight finishers garnered All-American status. For McGrath, it was a matter of heating up at the right time as he entered the tournament unranked on the event, but hit three solid routines in the past three days to give Iowa their second All-American in as many years.
McGrath, a Wheaton, Ill. native, reached the finals by earning a score of 16.050 on the event to tie for seventh out of the 51 gymnasts that competed on vault on the first day of the NCAA Championships. McGrath advanced to the NCAA’s by scoring a 16.250 on vault to place fourth in Session II of the National Qualifier on Thursday. McGrath’s qualifying score was half a tenth away from the school record.
McGrath finished with prestige on vault, but had a solid season on many other events. McGrath finished the season ranked 10th on floor exercise and set the school record on the event with a 15.500 against Nebraska earlier this season. He also never missed a single meet this season, and owns two season team high scores from solid performances on floor and vault all season long.
Iowa had five other gymnasts compete at the NCAA Championships to finish this season, the first with head coach JD Reive at the helm of the program. Senior Ben Ketelsen, senior Mike Jiang, sophomore Anton Gryshayev, sophomore Javier Balboa and freshman Samuel Wright also participated on Friday. Jiang was the last All-American for Iowa, earning the honor on pommel horse last season.
NCAA NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
Individual Event Finals
VAULT 1. Jacob Dalton (Oklahoma), 16.550 2. Christian Monteclaro (California), 16.250 3. Jeff Treleaven (Ohio State), 16.100 4. Parker Raque (Penn State), 16.050 5. Matt McGrath (IOWA), 15.900 6. Tim Gentry (Stanford), 15.700 7. Sam Mikulak (Michigan), 15.500 8. Alex Naddour (Oklahoma), 15.250 9. Tyler Mizoguchi (Illinois), 15.200 10. Alex Buscaglia (Stanford), 15.050