April 17, 1997
No. 2 Cal Advances to Finals
IOWA CITY, Iowa - The second-ranked California men's gymnastics team advanced to the finals of the NCAA Men's Gymnastics Championships finishing first of six teams during the preliminary competition held at the University of Iowa. The Bears total of 232.500 bettered Oklahoma's 321.550 and Iowa's 231.325. Conspicuously missing from the final will be top-ranked Ohio State which finished fourth with a score of 231.275.
With the win, Cal moves into the driver's seat becoming the favorite to win the national championship when competition resumes Friday night at 7 p.m.
"I was pleased," coach Barry Weiner said. "I didn't think that we did our absolute best, but we did enough to advance. Our goal has always been to win the national championships, not to beat Ohio State."
The Bears, however, will not benefit from Thursday's winning performance as Cal, Oklahoma, and Iowa each start with a clean slate as scores to not carry over into the final.
The only Cal gymnast entered in the all-around competition, David Kruse recorded a career-best score on the rings, helping secure a spot in the all-around final. Kruse's score of 57.525 was good enough for an overall fifth place while his horizontal-bar routine put him in the finals in that event. Other Bears to qualify for the event finals include: Oleg Kosiak, who won the parallel-bar competition while placing fifth on floor and seventh on the horizontal bar; Trent Wells, who qualified with fifth-place finishes on vault and horizontal bar to go along with an eight on parallel bars; Evgenii Zherebchevskiy who finished sixth on rings and seventh on parallel bars and Andrew Hampy, who qualified as the runner-up on floor.