WEST POINT, NY – Eight University of Iowa men’s gymnasts qualified for a total of 17 routines to day two of the NCAA Competitions during Friday’s Qualifier. Finals begin at 6 p.m. (CT) tomorrow. The Hawkeyes were led by all-arounder Andrew Botto who notched a total of 80.550 to finish in second.
“It is super exciting,” said Botto. “This is the first time I did all-around at NCAA’s so it’s really rewarding to get that top-three finish and go onto the second day and hopefully get that top eight to get the All-American status.”
The top three all-arounders and event finishers who are not on a qualified team advanced to day two.
“It feels wonderful to have eight gymnasts and 17 routines advance to tomorrow,” said head coach JD Reive.
“The goal was to go in as a team. We performed as good as we were going to. We put it out they and we left it out there. It was 100 percent. They competed great tonight. It was one of our best meets of the season. We didn’t have enough points for the session we were allocated in the bracket to get in there but I think the number of routines that are going into finals tomorrow shows that we obviously did great gymnastics tonight.”
Iowa scored a 68.750 on pommel horse. The Hawkeyes send junior Austin Hodges, sophomore Kevin Johnson, and freshman Nick Merryman to day two of competition. Hodges notched a 14.300 to finish seventh, Merryman tied his season-best 14.100 to finish ninth, and Kevin Johnson tallied a 13.650 to finish 14th.
The Hawkeyes notched a 69.200 on rings. They send redshirt junior Mark Springett, junior Dylan Ellsworth, and Merryman to finals tomorrow. All-arounder Botto notched a 14.300 and tied for eighth, Springett tallied a 13.900 and finished 12th, Ellsworth recorded a 13.800 and tied for 13th, and Merryman scored a season-best 13.700 and finished 17th.
Iowa recorded a 69.600 on vault. Ellsworth scored a 14.450 and finished ninth to highlight the event.
Senior Cory Paterson and sophomore Rogelio Vazquez helped the Hawkeyes score a 69.550 on parallel bars. Paterson scored a season-best 14.300 to finish seventh, Botto tallied a 14.150 to finish 10th, and Vazquez notched a 13.800 to tie for 15th to move on to day two.
The Hawkeyes tallied a 67.100 on high bar. Paterson and Hodges advance with scores of 14.000 (T6) and 13.850 (T10) respectively.
Iowa notched a 68.300 on floor. Springett tied for 16th with a score of 13.950 and freshman Andrew Herrador tied for 18th with a score of 13.800. Paterson tied for 20th with a score of 13.750.
The Hawkeyes return to competition tomorrow as they compete at in day two of the NCAA Championships. Competition is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. (CT) at Holleder’s Center Christl Arena in West Point, New York.