Balboa, Loochtan, Earn Big Ten Weekly Awards

April 1, 2013

IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa senior Javier Balboa has been named Big Ten Gymnast of the Week, and Matt Loochtan has been named Big Ten Freshman of the Week, the conference announced Monday. Both garnered their first career weekly honors after leading the Hawkeyes to a 428.300- 400.300 victory over UIC on Saturday at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

Balboa captured three event titles against No. 15 UIC, including first place finishes on parallel bars (15.500), still rings (15.200), and the all-around (86.800). Iowa’s last Gymnast of the Week recipient was Anton Gryshayev on March 26, 2012.

Loochtan secured the vault title with a score of 14.600 against the Flames. He was the Hawkeyes’ top scorer on floor exercise with a 14.750 to earn second place. Matt McGrath was the last Hawkeye to receive Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors on Feb. 8, 2010.

Balboa, Loochtan, and the Hawkeyes will travel to Minneapolis, April 5-6, to compete in the 2013 Big Ten Men’s Gymnastics Championships. The two day event will be held at the Sports Pavilion with action beginning both days at 7 p.m. (CT).