The University of Minnesota men's gymnastics team has climbed to No. 6 in the national rankings, after posting a team-record score of 353.900 last week in a victory over Iowa and Illinois-Chicago. The Golden Gophers also feature a number of athletes who are ranked among the Top 20 in their respective disciplines.
According to Gopher head coach Mike Burns, it looks like his team is beginning to peak. As the regular-season winds down, March is the perfect time to start hitting on all cylinders.
"I'm really excited about the quality of a lot of the routines in the lineup right now," Burns said. "It seems like many of our guys are really starting to break into the zone of extreme execution. When a team starts to do this, a lot of good things are bound to happen."
Minnesota competes in its final regular-season meet of the season Saturday, when it travels to Lincoln, Neb. Burns and the Gophers will be looking to continue to improve when they hit the floor at the Devaney Center to compete against Nebraska and Iowa.
"As we head into our final regular season meet this weekend in Nebraska, we just need to continue on this path of deduction-reduction in all of our routines," Burns said. "This past weekend, we had 46 percent of our routines with less than one point in deductions. The more routines we can perform in this range, the better. That will be a big goal for us this weekend."
While the Gophers have been climbing the rankings as a team. Many individual Minnesota gymnasts are nationally-ranked. That group is led by Aaron Fortunato, who is the No. 5-ranked gymnast on the high bar this season. He is also rated as the No. 11 athlete in the all-around.
Seniors Adam Reichow and Colin McGuire are Nos. 7 and 8, respectively, on the floor exercise. Freshman Harris Coleman has made his way all the way up to the No. 8 position on the pommel horse. Reichow and fellow senior Andre Berry are tied for No. 10 on the vault, while McGuire is 17th in that event.
Saturday's meet at Nebraska is slated to begin at 7 p.m.