PITTSBURGH – The Oklahoma men’s gymnastics program had seven athletes, six on the current roster and one alum, compete in the final round of the P&G Championships in Pittsburgh on Sunday.
“A lot of our guys did a lot of good things this weekend and I think it’s a good starting point for us as we enter the collegiate season and get ready for NCAAs,” said OU men’s gymnastics head coach Mark Williams.
Following the national championships both Jacob Dalton and Steven Legendre were named to the 15-man U.S. Senior Men’s National Team, with Dalton earning the fourth selection of his professional career onto the World Championships team that will compete in China in early October. The top six finishers at the P&G Championships were named to the team.
Legendre was granted a spot on the national team after a successful petition he had to file due to failing to complete the championships because of injury.
Dalton, a former Sooner and 2012 Olympian, entered the final in second place with a first round score of 90.250. Dalton turned in another solid performance on Sunday with an all-around mark of 89.600 to finish with a combined score of 180.200 for the championships.
Unfortunately for Dalton, Sam Mikulak and John Orozco did enough to bump the former Sooner out of second place and Dalton had to settle for third.
“I’m thrilled to have Jake on the World Team competing in China,” said Williams. “He did well enough today to make the team and he helps the squad in so many different events.”
Among Sooners on the current OU roster, Allen Bower continued his strong summer of performances by turning in a final round score of 85.350 to finish 13th overall out of the 36 gymnasts who completed two rounds with a total score of 171.600. Bower improved his score in the final round on four of the six events.
Incoming freshman Hunter Justus wrapped up his championships with a score of 84.200 for a combined mark of 168.000. The score has Justus in second-place in the junior championships in the 17-18 age range, falling just .200 points off the top of the podium as it currently stands, which was held by Bobby Baker. The soon-to-be freshman’s score ranked him 22nd in the senior competition.
There are a number of competitors yet to compete but it looks as though Justus will qualify for the junior men’s national team after his solid all-around display over the weekend.
“Allan Bower is knocking on the door of becoming a member of the senior national team with his results this summer and I am happy to most likely have Hunter Justus on the national team at the junior level.”
Other members of the OU program to complete both rounds and compete in all six events at the national championships were Kanji Oyama (21st, 168.200) and Colin Van Wicklen (T25th, 164.950).
Two other Sooners in Danny Berardini and Joshua Yee competed in a number of the events over the weekend. Berardini completed every discipline except pommel horse on Friday and Sunday and finished with a mark of 157.850 and Yee completed four of the six events and totaled a score of 139.400.