Feb. 7, 2010


Courtesy of Illinois

LAS VEGAS – Illinois junior Paul Ruggeri and sophomore Tyler Mizoguchi were named to the U.S. Senior National team for the first time in their careers, after finishing in the top 10 in the national team selection points program following the completion of the 2010 Winter Cup Challenge late Saturday night in Las Vegas. Ruggeri finished in fifth place with 47 points, while Mizoguchi earned 29 points, good for ninth. Chris Brooks of the University of Oklahoma was the top finisher with 68 points. All-around and individual event champions were determined by a two-day combined score.

Mizoguchi led the way in the all-around for the Illini, as he tied for 12th place overall with a two-day combined score of 169.000 and placed second on parallel bars (29.200) and fifth on floor exercise (30.000). Ruggeri rebounded from a rough first day of competition with one of the top all-around scores on Saturday (87.550) to place 15th overall in the all-around (168.100). Ruggeri was impressive on several events with a second-place finish on vault (32.250), a fifth-place finish on high bar (28.500) and a seventh-place finish on parallel bars (28.550).

Also competing for the Illini was senior Chad Wiest, who finished in third place on floor exercise (30.200) and ninth on vault (31.400), while junior Daniel Ribeiro took sixth place on pommel horse, followed by senior Luke Stannard in 13th (27.600). On high bar, Stannard tied for ninth place (28.000) and sophomore C.J. Padera tied for 12th (27.800).

Despite being sidelined due to injury, former Illini Wes Haagensen retained his spot on the national team through an athlete petition. Future Illini C.J. Maestas finished in 20th place in the all-around (166.250), fifth on rings (29.250) and 10th on parallel bars (28.400).

The 17 gymnasts named to the U.S. Men’s Senior National team, which also includes Kyle Bunthuwong, Chris Cameron, Jake Dalton, Tim Gentry, Joey Hagerty, Jonathan Horton, Glenn Ishino, Steven Legendre, Danell Leyva, Tim McNeill, Alexander Naddour, Kevin Tan and Brandon Wynn, will be on the team through the 2010 Visa Championships in Hartford, Conn., Aug. 11-14. Based on the Winter Cup results, 10 qualified for the team using the national team points system, and the remaining were selected by the men’s program committee from among the Winter Cup participants and athlete petitions.