No. 1 OU Advances to Friday's NCAA Finals

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
APRIL 19, 2012

April 19, 2012


  FX PH SR V PB HB Total
 Illinois 59.50 58.80 58.15 59.55 60.15 60.10 356.25
 Oklahoma 60.15 59.10 59.25 59.50 60.05 57.55 356.20
 California 59.15 56.50 56.50 59.70 59.45 59.85 351.15
 Minnesota 57.20 55.05 56.75 59.75 58.45 56.15 343.35
 Temple 57.30 56.20 55.85 58.15 56.30 55.55 339.45
 Air Force 56.35 56.10 53.15 57.35 56.40 54.40 333.75
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 Individual Event Winners
 Event  Gymnast  Score
 Floor  Preston Ellsworth (OU)  15.100
 Pommel  Chad Mason (Illinois)  15.200
 Rings  C.J. Maestas (Illinois)  15.450
 Vault  Patrick Piscitelli (OU)  15.350
 P-Bars  Jake Dalton (OU)  15.400
 High Bar  Paul Ruggeri (Illinois)  15.700
 AA  Dennis Mannhart (Cal)  85.550

 Ticket Info
General admission tickets for the national championship are $10 for adults and $5 for OU students, senior citizens and youth. Tickets are available at the Lloyd Noble Center box office, online at or by calling the OU Athletics Ticket Office at (800) 456-GoOU.
 Related Links
 Home | Ticket Info | Promotions | Webcasts
 2012 Oklahoma Media Guide | Meet Notes
 OU Season Stats | NCAA Stats & Rakings

NORMAN, Okla. - No. 1 Oklahoma advanced to the team finals of the NCAA Men's Gymnastics Championship after posting a 356.20 in the national qualifier on Thursday night at the Lloyd Noble Center.

Oklahoma (22-2) finished second and will compete for its ninth national title on Friday night at 7 p.m. on its home floor. The Sooners have won five national championships since 2002, all under current head coach Mark Williams.

“I was pleased with the performance tonight,” said Williams. “Our goal was to qualify and be in the top three teams. Some events, we exceeded our expectations for tonight. I was real happy with the pommel horse, as a team. We still have room to get better. I held out Jake Dalton on a couple things and Dylan Akers, so I think we can do better tomorrow night.”

The Sooners will be joined in the finals by Illinois (356.25) and California (351.15), who finished in first and third, respectively in the second qualifier.

OU posted the evening's top scores on floor exercise, pommel horse and still rings while Illinois recorded the meet's top scores on vault, parallel bars and high bar.

In Thursday's afternoon session, No. 2 Penn State (353.00), No. 3 Stanford (348.50) and No. 6 Michigan (353.450) qualified for the finals by finishing in the top three.

Oklahoma started the meet strong by topping 60 points on parallel bars for the first time this season. Dalton led Oklahoma with a 15.400 followed by a career-best 15.150 from Danny Berardini. Dalton's posted the night's top parallel bars' score.

After a slow start on high bar, Dalton boosted the Sooners' top score with a 15.250 to total a 57.550. The Fighting Illini countered with a season-high 60.150 on p-bars to take a 119.700-117.600 lead after two rotations.

Both Oklahoma and Illinois competed on its best events in the third rotation with the Sooners scoring a 60.150 on floor and the Illini earning a 60.100 on high bar. Dalton, the 2011 NCAA champion and the nation's top gymnast on floor, did not compete in the event to rest for Friday's finals. Preston Ellsworth was tied for the meet's top score on floor with a 15.100.

After failing to score over a 59 on pommel horse all season, the Sooners collected a 59.100 on the apparatus behind Dylan Akers' 14.900 and Troy Nitzky's 14.850. Oklahoma's previous season-best was a 58.650.

Dalton scored a 15.150 to lead the Sooners on rings to a 59.250 in the sixth rotation.

Trailing by exactly two points heading into the final rotation, the Sooners stepped up and posted a season-best vault score of 60.100 behind Patrick Piscitelli's meet-high 15.350.

The Sooners will start Friday's championship meet on the floor exercise.




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