Last Thursday, nine men’s gymnastics athletes competed at the NCAA Championships hosted by Pennsylvania State University; however, none of the Tribe competitors advanced to Saturday’s individual finals.
p. Freshman Derek Gygax turned in the College’s strongest performance of the night, setting a career-high of 47.75 and earning ninth-place among individuals (12th overall) in the all-around. Sophomore James Prim placed 14th overall with a score of 9.2 on the rings, as he recorded the Tribe’s highest score of the competition; he also competed in the pommel horse event and finished 12th among individuals. Classmate Sloan Crawford finished ninth individually with a score of 8.9 in the floor exercise. Meanwhile, senior Dave Ridings set a personal best on the parallel bars scoring an 8.7 to close out his college career.
p. “I could not have dreamed of a better way to finish,” Ridings said. “It was a great ending and summary of my career.”
p. Junior David Locke scored 8.15 in the vault competition, while sophomore Richard Pearson received a 7.1 in the pommel event. On the rings, junior Aaron Ingram scored 8.75, placing twelfth as an individual and 28th overall. Junior Andrew Hunt placed 28th overall on the parallel bars with a score of 8.2; he also received an 8.1 in the high bar event earning him 11th place individually and 29th overall.
p. Although this was the final competition of the season, next year’s team looks to continue the Tribe tradition of gymnastics excellence. Overall the team had a great season, in large part due to the individual strengths of the team.
p. “Every time we took two steps forward we would take one step backward, as a series of injuries from chronic shoulder problems to broken toes dogged us from start to finish,” Head Coach Cliff Gauthier said. “In spite of the continual setbacks, this team still was able to make a nice end of the season run.”