Feb. 11, 2012
IOWA CITY — The University of Iowa men’s gymnastics team set a new mark for its season high team score, but couldn’t edge out No. 6 Minnesota or No. 11 Nebraska in a tri-meet inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The No. 12 Hawkeyes tallied a 334.500 to place third. The Golden Gophers placed first with a 340 while Nebraska finished runner-up with a 336.500.
“This meet was better for us. We definitely hit more routines, but I still would have liked to see a higher team score,” said head coach JD Reive. “Each week gets better, we’re hitting more sets and our guys are starting to follow through on things.”
The Hawkeyes had eight top-four finishes, which included first place honors for junior Broderick Shemansky on all-around. Shemansky set a career best mark with an 82.500 on all-around to top the field.
Iowa also got a first place finish from junior Javier Balboa on parallel bars. Balboa tied Minnesota’s Russell Dabritz with a 14.800 on the event to place tied for first. Balboa set the school record on parallel bars in Iowa’s last meet and is currently ranked fifth on the event.
The Hawkeyes placed first on parallel bars as a team, scoring a 57.600 to beat Nebraska and Minnesota on the event. Iowa’s score was just one-tenth away from tying the school record.
Junior Matt McGrath returned from a knee injury to lead Iowa on rings, placing tied for second. The Wheaton, Ill., native scored a 14.400.
Freshman Mitchell Landau placed third on parallel bars, scoring a 14.700. The runner-up finish was the highest the Iowa City native has placed so far in his young career. Landau has five top-five finishes this season.
The Hawkeyes also had four fourth place finishes. Sophomore Angelo Bronzino and Shemansky tied for fourth on high bar, each scoring 14.100 on the event. The score was a career best for Bronzino. Balboa placed fourth on vault, scoring a 14.500 to lead the Hawkeyes on the event. Junior Anton Gryshayev placed fourth on rings with a 14.300.
Iowa’s team score topped its previous best mark on the season, which came two weeks ago against Illinois-Chicago with a 332.100. Reive said his squad got an adrenaline boost with the event being televised live on Big Ten Network.
“It was fun to have a TV audience, and it brings an extra ambiance and some added pressure for our guys,” said Reive. “It’s important to have that, because the guys will have to compete with that same feeling and atmosphere when the Big Ten Championships get here.”
The Hawkeyes will be back in action on Feb. 25th, traveling to compete against top-ranked Oklahoma. Start time is set for 7 p.m.