NORMAN – The No. 1-ranked Oklahoma men’s gymnastics team breaks from NCAA action this weekend as several Sooners turn their focus to the 2018 Winter Cup in Las Vegas, Nev.
Junior Yul Moldauer, alumni Allan Bower, Alex Powarzynski, Alex Naddour, Kanji Oyama and Colin Van Wicklen and signees Spencer Goodell and Morgan Seyler will compete at the Winter Cup Feb. 15 and 17.
Performances at the 2018 Winter Cup Challenge will help determine the 12 men who will comprise the U.S. Men’s Senior National Team through the 2018 U.S. Gymnastics Championships in Boston, Aug. 16-19.
The event starts on Thursday with two preliminary sessions. Goodell will compete as part of the junior division in session one starting at 3:00 p.m. CT. Moldauer, Bower, Powarzynski, Naddour, Oyama, Van Wicklen and Seyler take part in session two starting at 8:30 p.m. CT. The top 14 athletes from the first session and the top 28 from the second session will compete in the finals on Saturday, Feb. 17.
Following the two-day competition, the top six ranked all-around athletes will automatically qualify for the 2018 senior national team. The Men’s Program Committee will select six more gymnasts from the participants at the Winter Cup Challenge or from petitions to the team. Based on his World Championships results, Moldauer will be automatically selected to the national team if he participates at the 2018 Winter Cup and qualifies to the finals.
At last year’s Winter Cup, Moldauer won the all-around competition with a two-day total of 171.750, becoming the first Sooner to place first at the event since Chris Brooks in 2014. Moldauer also won titles on rings (30.100) and parallel bars (29.300). Bower finished the all-around in third with a 169.900. Both he and Moldauer automatically qualified for the U.S. Senior Men’s National Team. In addition to Bower and Moldauer, Brooks, Dalton, Naddour, Oyama and Hunter Justus were selected. Out of the 15 national team members, seven were Sooners.
Live scoring will be available throughout the Winter Cup. Follow the Sooners at the event on the official live stream on the USA Gymnastics YouTube channel.