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A trio of senior gymnasts cap their careers at the ECAC Championships

By Eric M. Reifschneider

Three members of the MIT men's gymnastics team competed in the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championships March 3 at the University of Pittsburgh. Senior tri-captains Alan Nash, Mark Malonson, and Eric Reifschneider represented MIT in a meet with gymnasts from top Division I teams such Temple University, the US Naval Academy, the University of Pittsburgh, William and Mary College, and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

The three MIT gymnasts, all-arounders during the season, competed only in their best events in this meet. Nash received MIT's highest score, 8.25, for a full-twisting handspring vault. Nash also performed well on the parallel bars, where he scored 7.8.

Malonson scored 7.95 on the floor exercise with a series of difficult tumbling combinations and a straight-arm, straight-body "planche" press to a handstand. Malonson also showed his strength on the rings, where he held an L-cross, then pulled up to a support and pressed to a handstand.

Reifschneider's best score was 6.8 on the floor. He began his routine with a half-twisting back flip punch front flip. His score would have been higher had he not overrotated the front flip and stepped out of bounds.

Although MIT qualified for the Division II-III National Championships this weekend in San Luis Obispo, CA, the team will not go to the meet. Thus, the ECAC Championship was the last meet in the collegiate careers of Nash, Malonson, and Reifschneider. During their four years of competition, MIT, once a perennial doormat in Northeastern gymnastics, compiled a record of 19-9, ended a 12-year losing streak to Lowell and a 5-year winless stretch at Vermont, and twice qualified for the Division II-III National Championships.

(Editor's note: Eric M. Reifschneider '89 is a tri-captain of the men's gymnastics team.)