March 15, 2013
The eighth-ranked California men’s gymnastics team will host defending national champion and sixth-ranked Illinois in an action-packed meet that also features the women’s gymnastics team taking on No. 11 Nebraska and a celebration of the end of the regular season with Senior Night and Alumni Night. The action begins at 7 p.m. on Saturday in Haas Pavilion.
“This is going to be a really great meet with such highly ranked teams. There will be something to watch at every moment with no down time while we honor our seniors and alumni and compete alongside the women,” said California assistant coach JT Okada.
“We hope that our seniors will look back on their time here at Cal as a time when they developed both as athletes and individuals,” Okada said. “I hope they’ve also learned and developed the values of our program that have been set forth by the teams of the past.”
Alumni of both the men’s and women’s gymnastics programs will also be on hand to celebrate the program’s history and will be honored during the meet.
Throughout the season, both the men and women’s teams have frequented each other’s meets to offer support. Both teams have attended each other’s home meets while also traveling as far as Palo Alto and Davis to support each other. The co-ed meet will offer a unique element to the regular competition, as all four teams will compete at the same time.
“It isn’t unusual for us to be in the gym with the women as we train with them daily, but I’m glad to have the chance to support the women’s team as we head into the postseason,” Okada said. “It represents a message that we are a Cal gymnastics family and while the sports are different in many ways, the programs are united in their pursuit of excellence.”
Last Sunday, in Cal’s first return home since Jan. 13, the ninth-ranked Golden Bears trounced twelfth-ranked Temple by posting the team’s best score of the season in a 428.650-405.150 victory. Seven Golden Bears posted season-high totals on an event, and the team posted its best still rings total of 2013. The Bears swept Temple in every event, with Cal’s gymnasts taking the top prize in all six events.
Where the Bears Rank Nationally
Kevin Wolting: T9
Takahiro Kawada: 13
Steven Lacombe: 13
Kevin Wolting: 15
Jonathan Liu: 10
Kevin Wolting: 11
Kevin Wolting: 11
Kyle Zemeir: 19