After Stanford men’s gymnastics posted a season-high performance against No. 8 Cal (4-3, 1-3 MPSF), 11 current and future Cardinal gymnasts traveled to Frisco, Texas, this weekend to compete in the 2022 Winter Cup. Following their top-five placements in the all-around competition, freshman Khoi Young, sophomore Colt Walker and future Cardinal gymnast Asher Hong earned automatic berths on the 2022 U.S. Senior National Team.
Tokyo Olympian and senior Brody Malone has already earned his spot on the national team by winning three medals at the Cottbus World Cup in Germany.
Eight more spots are still up for grabs. Point totals from this meet and a selection committee will decide who receives the final coveted spots.
Oklahoma senior Vitaliy Guimaraes led the field with an 83.950. Young and Hong finished within a point of Guimaraes, while Tokyo Olympian Yul Moldauer and Walker rounded out the top five with scores of 81.648 and 81.502 points, respectively.
True freshmen Taylor Burkhart and Ian Lasic-Ellis just missed out on automatic spots, placing sixth and seventh, respectively, in the all-around.
“For the most part, it was successful,” head coach Thom Glielmi said. “It did not surprise me that Khoi ended up in the top five, hitting all six routines.”
“However, there is still a lot of room for improvement,” Glielmi added.
The Cardinal always seem to improve before their big meets, and today was no exception. They were also well-represented on the podium for each of the six individual events, nabbing four event titles based on two-day totals.
Lasic-Ellis led the pack on the floor exercise with a 27.700 and placed top five on the pommel horse, still rings and high bar.
“Ian really showed us that he is somebody to look out for,” Glielmi said. “He did a phenomenal job.”
Young and Hong did not leave the Lone Star State empty-handed. Young claimed the pommel horse title and finished runner-up on the vault behind Hong. Hong also grabbed second-place finishes on the floor exercise and still rings and a third-place finish on the parallel bars.
Senior Curran Phillips dazzled the Texan crowd on the parallel bars, scoring above 16.000 both nights to earn the event title. In doing so, Phillips made his case for a spot on the national team as a specialist.
A member of the 2021 U.S. Senior national team and competitor at the Olympic Trials, senior Ian Gunther placed 13th with a 78.650 despite having severe arm cramps throughout the meet.
“The cramping limited Gunther more than we anticipated,” Glielmi said. “He did a great job on the high bar, but we had to scratch him on the floor and vault.”
The Cardinal will be back home in Burnham Pavilion on Saturday, March 5, for a tri-meet against No. 12 Air Force (1-9, 0-4 MPSF) and Cal. First routines are set for 4 p.m. PT.