Multiple Records Fall in Men's Gymnastics Home Finale
March 7, 2010
USAF ACADEMY, Colo. - Sophomore Chase Nobles blasted the program record on the pommel horse, as the No. 14 Air Force men's gymnastics team posted its highest team score ever in its final home competition of the 2010 season on Sunday, March 7. Although the Falcons fell by a narrow 348.600-346.450 decision to 12th-ranked Illinois-Chicago, the Falcons combined for six Academy records and 15 career-best individual marks.
Nobles score a 14.700 to tie for first on the pommel horse, while breaking the previous record of 14.200 that classmate Jake Houder set twice last year. The score is a personal improvement of nearly an entire point, shattering the mark of 13.800 that he set during Friday night's tri-meet.
The Falcons' team score of 346.450 blasted the previous record of 342.550 which the team set last year in Arizona. Contributing to the new program standard were Academy records on the floor exercise (58.650), still rings (59.350), vault (62.450) and high bar (55.900). In addition, the Falcons' pommel horse score of 54.650 is the second-highest total in program history.
The sophomore pommel horse specialist was one of four Falcons that won at least a share of an event title. Junior Nash Mills and sophomore Joel Uptmor tied for first on the vault with matching scores of 15.750, while sophomore Devin Menefee won his third still rings title in as many meets with a tally of 15.350. Uptmor's score was a career-best and tied for the third-best total in Academy history, while Menefee set a personal-best on the rings to move into eighth all-time.
In addition to their first-place finishes on the vault, Uptmor placed second on the floor exercise with a career-best 14.950 (fifth-best score in program history), while Mills recorded a 14.250 to tie for second on the high bar. Mills also finished within the top five on the still rings (14.700) and parallel bars (14.150), while Uptmor scored a season-best 13.850 to tie for fifth on the high bar.
Freshman Travis Langham set or matched career-best marks on each of his four events, while picking up three top-five placements. Langham tied for third on the vault with a score of 15.650, placed fourth on the high bar (13.950) and tied for fifth on the floor exercise (14.350).
Junior Dan Klimkowski placed third on the still rings with a career-best 14.950, while placing fourth and tying for fifth on the floor exercise (career-best 14.650) and pommel horse (season-high 13.650), respectively. Classmate Aaron Zaiser placed third on the floor exercise with a seasonal-best score of 14.700.
Freshman Thomas Wilkinson improved his career-best marks on all three of his events. He tied for fifth on the high bar with a career-high 13.850, sparking the Falcons' impressive run on that event. Wilkinson also scored career-best marks on the pommel horse (12.950) and parallel bars (13.650 - a personal improvement by nearly one whole point). In his final meet at Cadet West Gym, senior Garrett Canter posted two career-best scores, tallying a 14.000 on the still rings and a 13.850 on the high bar.
Air Force heads to the East Coast next weekend for a pair of dual meets. The Falcons will take on service academy rival Army on Friday, March 12, in West Point, N.Y., before traveling to Springfield, Mass., on Sunday, March 14, for a dual meet with Springfield College.