Men’s Gymnastics: College falls early at NCAA pre-lims

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April 22, 2008

1:56 AM

Pitted against a very competitive field at the NCAA Championships, the Tribe did not qualify for the team finals Thursday after failing to place in the top half of its flight.

Competing amongst several Olympic hopefuls, the College’s 335.950 total put it at the bottom of its flight among powerhouses like the University of Michigan (354.30), Penn State University (357.30), and Oklahoma University (357.50), who would eventually take home the title.

Senior Dave Locke and sophomore James Prim both qualified for the individual championships by posting one of the top three scores among individuals on non-qualifying teams. Locke had a very clean floor exercise routine that gave him a score of 15.200. His performance was good for third place and a spot in the second round of individual competition.

Prim had a stellar performance as well, placing 17th overall on the pommel and qualifying for rings with a mark of 15.400 after finishing atop the individuals on non-team qualifiers and fifth overall.

Among the gymnasts who failed to qualify, sophomore Derek Gygax’s strong showing in his six events for the Tribe gave him an eighth-place all around with a total of 81.050, while senior Andrew Hunt ended his career on a high note, finishing tied for 22nd in the field of 41 on the high bar.

“We had a really great meet, hitting 30 of 36 routines and finishing 11th in the nation after beginning the year ranked 14th, which ties our best ranking,” Locke said.

In the second round of individual championships Friday, both gymnasts came up short of advancing to the 10-man field of the final round of competition. Prim was very steady on the rings and his score of 15.000 — only 1.100 off the leader — earned him the top score among individual qualifiers and 22nd place overall.

Locke had a solid run but faltered at the end of his floor routine, putting his hand down on his last pass to finish his final event with a mark of 14.650, good for 37th overall.

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