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Men's Gymnastics Team Competes at Nationals, Finishes in Sixth Place

By David Golombek
Team Member

The men's gymnastics team finished off an excellent season by placing sixth at Nationals, held in Denton, Texas. The best division II, III, and non-scholarship division I schools in the country were there to compete, as well as club teams from around the country. Notable teams at the meet included UCLA, Arizona State, William and Mary's, and the Air Force Academy. Individuals such as Steve McCain (UCLA) from the US National Team and Sinaisty Nuez (Miami Dade) from the Cuban National Team highlighted the meet with impressive performances.

Despite the tough scoring of judges at the national level, the MIT team again managed to break its five-man team record, bringing the point total to 216 under the old scoring rules. Rob Cooper '97 placed 11th in all-around competition, followed closely by Chris Ellefson '95 in 12th. Van Van '97 had an excellent meet, setting personal bests on the four events he competed in. David Golombek '98 also had a good meet, setting two personal bests.

MIT got off to a strong start in the meet on the va ult. Art Shectman '95, Geoff Phillippe '95, and Golombek threw handsprings for good scores. Andy McCraith '98 and Ellefson followed, also throwing excellent handsprings. Cooper finished off the event with an almost perfectly stuck handspring full, earning him an 8.5.

The team likewise got off to a strong beginning on the parallel bars. Golombek and Van began the event for the team, both scoring personal bests. Scott Lazerwith '95 hit his best routine of the season, but was given a surprisingly low 7.0. Cooper, Andrew Lobban '97, and Ellefson finished the event for the team. Next came pommel horse, where McCraith and Van had good routines to start the team off. Ellefson, Lobban, and Cooper followed, all posting excellent individual scores.

On the floor exercise, Van threw an excellent routine and scored a 7.9. Ellefson followed by scoring an 8.2. Cooper finished off the round with another clean routine, earning an 8.65.

The high bar was the next event, which Van started for MIT by setting yet another personal best. Shectman, Ellefson, and Cooper followed with nice sets. Lobban finished up the event, swinging a difficult routine similar to that of the finalists in the event, with the exception of an excellent dismount, which was rendered impossible by injuries.

On the still rings, after Brian Clarkson '97, Phillippe, and Lobban performed, Cooper and Lazerwith, delivered with scores 7.55 and 8.45. Ellefson finished off the event and the meet by scoring an 8.35.

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Volume 115, Number 24.
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