Oklahoma, Illinois, Ohio State Advance In Second Session
April 17, 2009
Oklahoma and Illinois finished 1-2 as expected, and Ohio State held off Minnesota for the final qualification spot in a nail-biting finish to complete the field for Friday's Team final at the Sports Pavilion in Minneapolis.
Oklahoma, Illinois and Ohio State will battle Stanford, Michigan and California for the 2009 National Collegiate team title.
The second-ranked Sooners combined for 360.950 points to edge the Illini, who finished with a team score of 359.300.
But the real battle was for third, where the Buckeyes and Gophers entered the seventh and final rotation with just 1.350 points separating the two teams from the third and final qualification position.
Ohio State, which edged Minnesota at the Big Ten Championships to take third, was able to do it once again as the Buckeyes responded under pressure to score a season-high 57.550 points on pommel horse to the Gophers' 55.650 points on parallel bars.
The difference upped the Buckeyes' lead over the home team to 3.250 points and secured OSU's spot in the final.
Illinois and Oklahoma also battled for the all-around Session II title and this time it was the Illini that came on top as Paul Ruggeri scored 90.450 points to top Sooner Steve Legendre, who finished with 90.100.
Minnesota's Aaron Fortunato finished with 85.900 points and was the top all-arounder on from one of the non-advancing teams.
The Sooners and Illini both captured two individual wins, with Legendre OU posting the top score on floor and vault. Illinois' Dan Riberio earned the top mark on pommel horse, while Ruggeri notched the best high bar.
On rings, Ohio State's Brandon Wynn took the tops spot, while Minnesota's Russell Dabritz earned the best score of the night on parallel bars.
The 2009 National Collegiate Men's Gymnastics Championships continues from the University of Minnesota on Friday at 7 p.m.