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Senior Night Against Penn State, Illinois
March 18, 2011

March 18, 2011

 No. 2 Oklahoma vs. No. 4 Illinois, No. 5 Penn State
 Date  Saturday, March 19 | 7 p.m. (CT)
 Location  Norman, Okla. | McCasland Field House
 Tickets  OU Ticket Office
 Meet Notes  Sooners
 Internet  Live Stats
 Webcast  Live Video in All-Access

NORMAN, Okla. -- The Sooners welcome fourth-ranked Illinois and fifth-ranked Penn State to the Howard McCasland Field House, Saturday, for Senior Night at 7 p.m.

Saturday night marks the final home meet for the second-ranked Oklahoma men’s gymnastics team and for seniors C.J. Grimes, Ian Jackson, Steven Legendre, Anthony Naddour and Bobby Shortle.

Oklahoma looks to go undefeated with a 12-0 record in the regular season for the fourth time under Williams. The Sooners have finished the regular season undefeated three times in the past 12 years (2009, 2006, 2004).

OPPONENT PREVIEW

Penn State --Despite being forced to compete with a lineup depleted by sickness, the Penn State men’s gymnastics team pulled out a 342.500-340.550 victory over the Puerto Rico National Team in a meet held in San Juan on March 11.
Season’s Top Score: 353.500          Top Event: Still Rings, 60.533          Top Gymnast: Aronovich Felix, 86.500

Illinois --
The Illinois men’s gymnastics team finished in second place with a team sco re of 346.350 at a tri-meet at Ohio State against Ohio State and Nebraska on March 12.
Season’s Top Score: 355.400          Top Event: Floor, 59.900                 Top Gymnast: Tyler Mizoguchi, 89.300

UP NEXT

Oklahoma will take a week off to recuperate before beginning postseason competition at the 2011 MPSF Championships, April 2 in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Last season, the Sooners claimed their 10th conference title in the last 12 years. OU also notched its 31st and 32nd individual conference titles under Williams, as Steven Legendre (floor) and Ian Jackson (vault) won MPSF titles. 

2011 Roster | 2011 Schedule | 2011 Blog | 2011 Media Guide | Facebook

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MEET NOTES

A LOOK BACK AT SOONERS’ LAST COMPETITION
OU moved to 10-0 on the season, as the Sooners scored a 357.750 against then-No. 6 Michigan, the defending NCAA National Champions (355.400) in their first meeting of the
regular season.

The win marked the second straight victory over the Wolverines at Cliff Keen Arena (OU won at Michigan in 2010), and Oklahoma claimed its eighth victory of a top 10 opponent this season.

Highlighting the meet for Oklahoma was Legendre winning his second straight all-around, which was the 12th of his career. Legendre claimed an individual event title on vault with a score of 16.050.

OKLAHOMA VS. MICHIGAN INDIVIDUAL TITLES

Floor Exercise: Jacob Dalton, Oklahoma
Pommel Horse: Alex Naddour, Oklahoma
Rings: Jacob Dalton, Oklahoma
Vault: Steven Legendre, Oklahoma
All-Around: Steven Legendre, Oklahoma

NOTICING NATIONALLY
Throughout the season, Oklahoma gymnasts are being honored nationally for their efforts, as Steven Legendre and Jacob Dalton were both named the College Gymnastics Association gymnastics of the week on multiple occasions.

Jan. 23 -- Jacob Dalton
Feb. 6 -- Jacob Dalton
Feb. 13 -- Steven Legendre
March 6 -- Steven Legendre
March 13 -- Steven Legendre

LAST FAREWELL
Saturday night marks the final home meet for the No. 2 Oklahoma men’s gymnastics team and for seniors C.J. Grimes, Ian Jackson, Steven Legendre, Anthony Naddour and Bobby Shortle.

One of the most successful classes in Oklahoma history the 2011 seniors have been responsible for one National Championship (2008), 10 All-America honors (Legendre, 9; Shortle, 1), two MPSF conference titles (2008, 2010) and four individual conference titles (Legendre, 3; Jackson, 1).

CONFERENCE DOMINANCE

The MPSF Conference has consistently been the top-ranked conference in the NCAA the past 10 years. Oklahoma and Stanford are currently dominating the polls being ranked in the top three in all six events.

ATOP OF THE TEAM RANKINGS

OU currently holds the top ranking on floor (61.517), pommel horse (58.650) and vault (64.017 ) and is tied for first on parallel bars (59.317) in the latest GymInfo poll. The team is also ranked third on rings (60.100) and on high bar (59.017).

This week marks the second consecutive week that the Sooners are ranked in the top three in each apparatus.

HORTON, DALTON TAKE OVER 2011 AMERICAN CUP

Former OU All-American Jonathan Horton won the 2011 AT&T American Cup all-around title with a score of 90.198 on March 5. This is Horton’s third American Cup victory, previously winning the competition in 2006 and 2007.

OU sophomore Jacob Dalton, who won the 2011 Winter Cup Challenge, joined Horton on the podium finishing third in the competition with an all-around score of 88.497. The Reno, Nev., native also finished first on floor (15.766) and tied for first on parallel bars (15.066). This was Dalton’s first Tyson American Cup competition.

SETTING NEW BAR AT RMO
The meet was highlighted by two Sooners that posted RMO record highs with Legendre's 16.400 on vault and Dalton's 15.100 on parallel bars.

Four current Sooners, including Dalton (high bar parallel bars), Legendre (floor, vault, allaround), Jackson (rings) and Alex Naddour (pommel horse) hold each of the event records for the Rocky Mountain Open.

ONE MEET AT A TIME
The Sooners will participate in eight regular season meets and face five opponents that competed at the 2010 NCAA Championship final. OU will also host three home meets at the Howard McCasland Field House, highlighted by matchups with California Illinois and Penn State.

The 2010 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships will be hosted by Air Force Academy on April 2, while the NCAA Championships will be hosted by Ohio State on April 14 -16.

PRE-SEASON PROMINENCE
In the last 11 years, the OU men's gymnastics program has been ranked in the top three of the preseason coaches poll every season. Six of the 11 years the Sooners have been positioned at the top of the poll.

BRINGING IN MORE TALENT
For the 2011 season head coach Mark Williams signed Presten Ellsworth as a part of the 2010 signing class

Presten Ellsworth
Hometown: Allen, Texas
High School: Allen | Club: WOGA

A native of Allen, Texas, Ellsworth was a member of the USA Junior National Team for the 2005-06 season and is coached by Sergei Pakanich, at WOGA Gymnastics. In 2009, Ellsworth competed at the Men's Junior Olympic National Championships where he finished third on floor and 11th in the all-around and also competed at the Visa Championships.

In 2008, he also competed in Men's Junior Olympic National Championships and Visa Championships finishing seventh all-around in both events.

LEADING THE 2010 SOONERS
Seniors Ian Jackson and Steven Legendre were named co-captains for the 2011 season by head coach Mark Williams. Both were a part of the Sooners 2008 National Championship squad and have received national honors for their effort.

Dalton and Naddour were the latest to be named to the team, while Brooks, Horton and Legendre automatically retain their spots on the national team as members of the 2010 World Championships Team.



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