April 30, 2013
The Golden Gopher men’s gymnastics team held its annual season-ending banquet at TCF Bank Stadium on Tuesday. The event marked the end of the 2012-13 season, which culminated with an appearance at the NCAA Championships. Head coach Mike Burns and assistant coaches Russ Fystrom and Kostya Kolesnikov honored the student-athletes with this season’s team awards.
Sophomore Sean Bauer was named Most Conscientious, while Paul Montague was awarded with the Spirit of Gopher Gymnastics Award. Montague was joined by Jack Metcalf, who was named the Rookie of the Year.
Junior Justin Morinishi brought home the Coaches Appreciation Award. For his accomplishments in the gym and in the classroom, Nate Fortunato was recognized with the team’s Academic Excellence Award and the NCAA Elite 89 Award.
The Most Improved Competitor Award went to Matt Frey, who recorded new career highs on the vault, Parallel Bars and floor. Josh Wokurka was named the Most Tenacious Gymnast after competing in all six events this season.
Following his second place finish on the Pommel Horse at the NCAA National Championships and being named an All-American, sophomore Ellis Mannon garnered the Outstanding Accomplishment Award.
Steve Jaciuk was honored by his teammates by being voted the Most Valuable Gymnast. The athletes and coaches also voted Jaciuk as the team’s lone captain for the 2013-14 season, which will see the return of all of the athletes with the exception of two. Adam LaFleur exhausted his eligibility this year and Harris Coleman will not return to the team for a fifth year next season.
Local Talent Makes Impact on Gophers' Roster
University of Minnesota men's gymnast, Ryan Bergman, has become a staple competitor for the Gophers in the Parallel bars lineup and hails only 30-minutes down the freeway from the U.
Shashank's Redemption: Journey to Most Improved
University of Minnesota men's gymnastics sophomore Shashank Yallamraju was named the Gophers' Most Improved Gymnast of the 2016 season.
Wittenberg's NCAA Address
Alex Wittenberg was chosen as the student-athlete representative for the 2016 Men's Gymnastics NCAA Championships.