2012 Event Preview: Parallel Bars

Go Gophers! Russel Dabritz
Go Gophers!
Russel Dabritz
Go Gophers!

Nov. 30, 2011

By Kim Conley
Athletic Communications Student Assistant

The parallel bars are a historically strong event for the Gophers men's gymnastics team.

The team finished eighth in the 2011 standings on the event. Russell Dabritz finished ranked 13th in the country, with three other Gophers ranking in the top 35.

They will have to replace Mike Paulus, a top scorer from last year. Despite losing him and some others to graduation, the team anticipates a strong lineup this season.

Seniors Russel Dabritz, DJ Repp and Ross Cameratta will lead the way for the Gophers. Redshirt senior Adam LaFleur is also returning from last year's lineup as a big scorer.

Head coach Mike Burns believes some of the young guys will make an impact this year as well. Ellis Mannon, a strong competitor on pommel horse, is progressing on the parallel bars and is expected to contribute to the lineup.

It's going to be a battle for the sixth spot. Steve Jaciuk is a contender along with Donnie Carper, who is currently recovering from shoulder surgery but has potential to boost the team's score.

"It's a great event to watch," Burns said. "Handstands are critical. Something to look for is how many hand steps a guy takes in his handstand. You want as few as possible. We're always harping on these guys to make sure their hand placement is as stable as can be."

The parallel bars look like they will be an exciting event to follow this season for the Golden Gophers.

-UM-