March 8, 2012
WEST POINT, N.Y. -
Coming off a triangular split on Sunday with Temple and Springfield, Army's gymnastics team moved up two spots in the national rankings to No. 13 following a season-high 334.9. The Black Knight head to Springfield, Mass., for a dual meet Friday evening at 6 p.m. against the No. 18 Pride, who they outscored 334.9-323.9.
Army defeated Springfield in all but one of the six team events, and its depth proved the difference as each team claimed three individual winners. The Black Knights outpointed the Pride in five team events - floor exercise, pommel horse, vault, parallel bars and high bar - setting season highs on vault (55.7), parallel bars (56.6) and high bar (53.8). Springfield edged Army 56.7-56.5 on still rings.
Jared Breeden shattered his career mark beating the field on floor exercise (14.7), along with a second on still rings (14.5). Senior team captain Jonathan Hoey was first on pommel horse (14.0) with freshman Alex Ganz turning in a career-high 14.4 in a first-place finish on parallel bars.
Chase Brown set a season-high 14.5 on floor exercise, which is just 1/10 off his career mark, and recorded a 14.0 on vault and parallel bars. Nicholas Fettinger turned in a season-high 14.0 on parallel bars, and Ikaika Jakub set a career-high 14.2 garnering runner-up honors on parallel bars.
All seven Army's competitors on floor exercise posted either season or career marks. Zack Linton (13.9) and Jakub (14.2) joined Brown in setting season marks with Jeremy Cahill (14.0), Ian Howard (14.1) and Ganz (13.7) recording career marks along with Breeden.
Springfield winners were Ryan Ponce on still rings (15.3), Jimmy Pezzino on vault (14.3) and Ty Evans on high bar (14.0) and all-around (81.7).
Though bowing twice to No. 9 Temple over the weekend the Black Knights threw a scare at the Owls Friday evening, heading into the final event holding a 279.8-279.3 lead. Temple's 53.7 on high bar carried the team, ranked first in the Eastern College Athletic Conference, to 334.3-330.9 decision. The Owls swept Sunday's triangular with a 340.9.
The Black Knights, who are returning to the road for the first time since Feb. 20 after posting season highs in their last three meets, will be looking for their first win at Springfield's Blake Arena since 2007.
Army closes out its 2012 regular season in the state of Virginia. The Black Knights take on host William & Mary in a dual match Thursday evening, March 15 at 7 p.m., and two days later participate in a triangular with Temple and the Tribe on March 17 at 7 p.m.
The Black Knights will join Temple, Springfield, William & Mary, UIC and Navy for the ECAC Championships being hosted by the Owls in Philadelphia, Pa., April 6-7. Temple ranks first in the ECAC with a 340.300 average with Army second in the standings (330.767) followed by three-time defending champion UIC (329.767) in rounding out the top half of the six-team field.