BERKELEY – No. 5 California takes to the road for the first time this weekend, traveling to No. 2 Stanford on Saturday at Burnham Pavilion at 4 p.m. PT. The Golden Bears put on quite a performance in their season-opener under new Associate Head Coach Brett McClure, but ultimately were bested by rival Stanford 431.100-425.600 in Berkeley. They meet again this weekend in Palo Alto.
Poll Position 2014 GymInfo Poll
1. Oklahoma (5) 9. Minnesota 2. Stanford 10. Air Force 3. Michigan (9) 11. Iowa 4. Penn State 12. Temple 5. California 13. UIC 6. Ohio State Army 7. Illinois 15. William & Mary 8. Nebraska * First place votes in parentheses Log On Fans are encouraged to follow along live on Twitter @CalMensGym, or look for updates and photos on Facebook at Facebook.com/CalMGym, and log on to CalBears.com for a full meet recap. Next Up The Bears head across the Bay for a tri-meet against the second-ranked Stanford Cardinal and third-ranked Michigan Wolverines on Saturday, Jan. 25 at 7:00 p.m. PT at Burnham Pavilion in Palo Alto.
2014 Team Captains Associate Head Coach Brett McClure has announced that redshirt senior Donothan Bailey and junior Jonathan Liu have been selected as California’s captains for the 2014 season.
Bay Area Rivalry The California Golden Bears and Stanford Cardinal meet up for the second time this season in one of the most storied rivalries in collegiate men’s gymnastics. Despite falling narrowly in Berkeley last week and posting an 0-7 record against Stanford in 2013, the Bears hold a 127-82-2 record all-time in the series. Both teams are currently ranked among the country’s best, with Stanford coming in at number two nationally, and Cal ranking fifth in the 2014 GymInfo Poll.
Familiar Faces Cal Associate Head Coach Brett McClure is in his first season in charge of the Golden Bears’ program in 2014, but definitely will see some familiar faces in red this weekend. McClure was an assistant coach for the past three seasons under current Stanford Head Coach Thom Glielmi. Many of the student-athletes on the Stanford side were coached by McClure, so he definitely knows what to expect this weekend from the visitors. In addition, Stanford assistant Karl Ziehn is a former Cal gymnast, having competed for the Blue and Gold from 1999-2003
MPSF Strength Though last season’s national champion hailed from the Big Ten (Michigan), the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation boasts four of the top teams in the country, and are poised to produce national contenders again this season. Oklahoma finished as runners up last year, and come in ranked first in the GymInfo poll, while, Stanford is right behind them at second. Cal ranks fifth and Air Force is tenth. The Golden Bears finished third in the MPSF in 2013, and are looking for their first conference championship since 2004.
Youth Movement The 2014 edition of the California Golden Bears has one common theme throughout the composition of the roster, youth. Outside of captain Donothan Bailey (redshirt senior), Jeffrey Langenstein (redshirt senior), Christian Monteclaro (redshirt senior) and captain Jonathan Liu (junior), the Bears’ roster is made up of 14 sophomores and freshman (ten sophomores and four freshman). This young and dynamic group is poised to return to the NCAA Championships after missing the team finals for just the first time since the 1999 campaign.
Brilliant Bailey Redshirt senior and team co-captain Donothan Bailey returned to competitive gymnastics for the first time since the 2012 season with an incredible performance in The Big Meet last Saturday in Berkeley. He performed as an all-arounder, and posted the second highest total score (87.800) at the meet, behind Division I CGA Gymnast of the Week Akash Modi (Stanford). Bailey put up a 15.000 on parallel bars, a 14.850 on vault and a 14.700 on high bar.
Wolting Impresses Sophomore Kevin Wolting raised some eyebrows at Haas Pavilion last weekend against Stanford, finishing with an 85.450 total all-around score. He posted a 14.900 on vault and a 14.500 on floor exercise.
Vaulting Ahead Cal’s most impressive event at Saturday’s Big Meet was the vault, in which they outscored Stanford 73.750-73.450. Redshirt Senior Jeffrey Langenstein posted a meet-high 15.200, Kevin Wolting had a 14.900, Donothan Bailey scored a 14.850 and Christian Monteclaro posted a 14.750.
The full 2014 schedule can be found on the team’s page at CalBears.com here.