Hawkeyes Advance to NCAA Team Finals

April 19, 2013

NCAA Championships Central

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The University of Iowa men’s gymnastics team advanced to the NCAA team finals with its performance at the NCAA National Qualifier on Friday night at Rec Hall on the campus of Penn State University. The Hawkeyes advance to their first team finals since 2006, scoring a 426.55 to finish third in the second pre-qualifier.

“This is great,” said third-year UI head coach JD Reive. “This has been my goal since I got to Iowa three years ago. Doing it in that fashion was a little stressful I will say, but we pulled it off, we did our job today and that was all I could ask these boys to do.”

The top three teams and the top three all-around competitors not on one of the qualifying teams advanced from each pre-qualifying session to Saturday’s finals.

Iowa was one of four Big Ten teams to advance to the NCAA team finals.

Penn State (436.900) and Iowa took first and third place, respectively, in the second qualifying session, to move on to the team finals. In the first pre-qualifier, Michigan and Illinois finished first and third, respectively, to advance to Saturday’s team final.

“We still left some of it out there,” said Reive. “We have a few things we can still do that can increase score, and again it’s anybody’s game once you get in there. The five-up five-count definitely adds some parity to what we’re doing.”

Brandon Field led the Hawkeyes on floor with a score of 14.700 to place 13th. Matt Loochtan tied Stanford’s Paul Hichwa for 15th (14.500), while Lance Alberhasky scored 14.350, tying Andrew Teal of Ohio State to round out the top-20. Stanford’s Eddie Penev scored a 15.500 to take the event title. As a team, the Hawkeyes tallied a 71.700 on the floor exercise.

Anton Gryshayev was Iowa’s top finisher on pommel horse. Gryshayev scored 13.800 to finish 18th, followed by Eric Lofstrom in 19th (13.750) and Del Vecchio Orozco in a tie for 20th (13.700). The Hawkeyes finished with a score of 67.950 on the event. Penn State’s Craig Hernandez posted a score 15.400 to secure the title.

Iowa recorded their highest score of the night on still rings with a score of 74.100. William Albert led the way with his score of 15.300 to tie Trevor Howard of Penn State for second place. Gryshayev placed eighth (15.000), followed by Javier Balboa in ninth (14.900). Jack Boyle earned a 14.650 to finish in a three-way tie for 14th place. Steven Lacombe of U.C. Berkley earned rings champion with his score of 15.500.

With five gymnasts landing a spot in the top-20 on vault, the Hawkeyes tallied a team score of 72.600 to finish the event. Cyrus Dobre-Mofid and Loochtan both scored a 14.600 to tie for 11th place. Field tied Penn State’s Ismael Sanabria for 14th (14.500), while Albert and Balboa were two of four competitors to score 14.450 to tie for 16th.

On the parallel bars, Boyle tied Dennis Zaremski of Stanford for third place with a score of 14.750. Balboa recorded a 14.700 to finish in a three-way tie for fifth. Dobre-Mofid tied with U.C. Berkley’s Alex Tighe for 10th place (14.500). Alberhasky was one of four gymnasts to score 14.250, tying for 17th. Iowa finished the event with a 72.150.

Mitchell Landau finished in seventh place on the high bar with his score of 14.450. Boyle posted a 14.150 to finish 13th, while Alberhasky rounded out the top-20 with his score of 13.700. Wasef Burbar of Penn State tallied a 15.200 to take the high bar title. The Hawkeyes recorded a 68.050 on the event.

Balboa scored an 84.200 to place second in the all-around competition. Eddie Penev of Stanford finished first with a score of 87.450.

Saturday’s session is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. CT.