Gophers' Season Comes to a Close, Finish the Year at No. 8

Go Gophers! Ellis Mannon
Go Gophers!
Ellis Mannon
Go Gophers!

April 23, 2012

Despite falling one spot short of qualifying for the team finals at the NCAA Championships this past weekend, the Minnesota men's gymnastics team finished the season in eighth place. The University of Illinois captured the NCAA title, followed by Oklahoma in second and Penn State in third. The final rankings are as follows:
  1. Illinois           358.85
  2. Oklahoma      357.45
  3. Penn State    354.80
  4. Cal-Berkeley  353.00
  5. Stanford         352.65
  6. Michigan       351.05
  7. Ohio State     345.35
  8. Minnesota      343.35
  9. Nebraska       340.55
  10. Temple           339.45
  11. Iowa               336.65
  12. Air Force        333.75
Eight gymnasts and a total of ten routines qualified from Thursday's Regional Qualifier to perform again Friday for the chance at moving on to the Event Finals. Although none of Minnesota's ten routines advanced to Saturday's competition, the Gophers hit all ten of their routines on Friday night.

Here is a rundown of the individual routines that competed for Minnesota on Friday night along with their scores (in the order that they competed) and reaction from head coach Mike Burns:

DJ Repp - Vault, 14.75.
"DJ performed another great vault with a solid landing and finished in a six-way tie for 19th in the nation. DJ has been a mainstay of our vault lineup this year and has posted some of his top scores of his career this year. He will be a tough gymnast to replace next year."

Russell Dabritz - Parallel Bars, 14.90.
"Russell continued to put up impressive scores on parallel bars, and although he had a couple of small deductions, he did it again at the National Championships. His 14.90 held up in the top 10 throughout the entire meet until the final rotation. He was bumped to 11th place, just missing the cutoff for the Event Finals by .05."

Sean Bauer - Still Rings, 14.30.
"Freshman Sean Bauer got his feet wet at his first NCAA Championships qualifying for Day 2 on the still rings and finishing in 25th place. Sean is going to be a major contributor in the years to come for the Golden Gophers."

Steffen Beck - Pommel Horse, 14.15.
"Steffen did a great job for us in the post-season, hitting 5 of 5 routines between the Big Tens and the NCAAs. He finished 26th on the pommel horse at the Championships. As a sophomore we will look to Steffen for more solid routines in the next two years.."

Steve Jaciuk - High Bar, 14.14.
"Another freshman making Day 2, Steve has been a consistent performer for us throughout the year and should do nothing but improve in the years to come. He finished 26th on the high bar in his first NCAA Championships appearance."

DJ Repp - Floor Exercise, 14.30.
"DJ finished his college career with another hit set on floor exercise, finishing in a tie for 30th place. It's always great to see our seniors go out on a high note!"

Adam LaFleur - Vault, 14.35.
"We switched Adam to a more difficult vault earlier in the year and it really paid off as he was able to advance to Day 2 for the second straight year. He finished in 39th on vault. Adam is a senior but has one year of eligibility remaining, and we're looking forward to having him back."

Ellis Mannon - Parallel Bars, 14.45.
"Ellis had two of his highest scores of the year on parallel bars in these two days of competition. Ellis will be a real asset on this event in the years to come, as well as on pommel horse and high bar."

Russell Dabritz - Still Rings, 14.60.
"Russell finished his career with another hit set, earning him a 16th place finish. Russell was one of our more consistent performers this year and will be sorely missed next year."

Kyle Banks - High Bar, 14.05.
"Kyle again swung his way to a solid performance with an exciting routine that had a couple of big release moves. He finished tied for 27th place in the nation. Kyle has been a pleasant surprise this year as a walk-on freshman. We expect big things out of Kyle next year."