April 13, 2007
Stanford took third place tonight at the 2007 National Men's Gymnastics Collegiate Championships in State College, PA. The Cardinal posted a team score of 218.45, while Penn State (221.00) took home the national title, followed by runner-up Oklahoma (220.20). Michigan (218.40), Illinois (217.30), and Minnesota (217.15) finished fourth, fifth and sixth, respectively.
Stanford began on the pommel horse where Chris Harper led the way for the team with dynamic swings and great form on his travel sequences earning a 9.30 from the judges. David Sender also turned in a strong performance as he posted an 8.95, and despite having to count two falls the team started well with a score of 35.80.
The team then moved to perhaps their strongest event, the still rings. Stanford was able to count four scores over 9.50 to earn a meet high score of 38.65. The team was led by Alex Schorsch who displayed great matleses and an extremely long hold on his back uprise planche to earn a score of 9.80. Sender (9.70), Peter Derman (9.60), and Bryant Hadden (9.55) were also very impressive in the event. After two events, the Cardinal had a total score of 74.45.
On the vault it was Sender once again leading the team as he displayed a yurchenko two and a half twist earning a score of 9.30. Dylan Carney followed right behind and stuck a yurchenko double twist to record a 9.10 and help Stanford tally an event total of 35.80.
The fourth event for Stanford was the parallel bars where Harper again posted a team high score of 8.85. His routine featured a dynamic peach to a handstand, along with great back toss skills and good form through the entire routine. Lucas Hughes turned in a very clean set with a controlled diamadov and a Stutz handstand to earn an 8.70.
Carney again turned in a spectacular routine on the high bar with solid endo and stalder work, ending with a stuck full twisting double layout on the dismount to post a 9.70. Sender followed with a strong, clean endo full and a full spin to an el earning a 9.00. With one event remaining, the Cardinal had a team score of 180.80.
After struggling a bit on the parallel bars, Stanford knew they would need to turn in a solid performance on the floor exercise to finish in the top three. Hadden led the way with his near flawless routine, managing to stick every landing on his passes to post a score of 9.50. Greg Ter-Zakhariants also turned in a very solid performance with a dynamic front double full punch front half to earn a score of 9.40. The team was able to refocus on their final event to earn a third place finish with a total score of 218.45.
Sender turned in top-notch routines on nearly every event to earn fourth place in the All-Around competition with a total score of 54.00. Taqiy Abdullah-Simmons of Oklahoma took the top spot in the competition as he recorded a total score of 55.75.
The final day of competition takes place tomorrow at 4:00 p.m. PT with the individual event finals. Five Cardinal athletes have qualified for eight events, including David Sender (pommel horse, vault, rings), Alex Schorsch (rings), Peter Derman (rings), Dylan Carney (vault, high bar), and Chris Harper (pommel horse). Sender and Carney are defending NCAA Champions on the vault and high bar, respectively.