#4 Illini Best #9 Hawkeyes
Feb. 7, 2014
IOWA CITY, Iowa - Illinois men's gymnastics defeated the Iowa Hawkeyes Friday evening 433.350-420.300. It was a record-setting night for the Illini, with several gymnasts achieving season and career bests and C.J. Maestas breaking the NCAA and school records on still rings. As a team, Illinois won on pommel horse (69.750), still rings (74.800), vault (72.700), parallel bars (71.500) and high bar (71.850).
"This week we decided to rest some of our injured gymnasts and compete with a more consistent lineup," said head coach Justin Spring. "The energy was great, and we were hitting routines when we needed to. I think our guys really did their job this weekend."
The Illini started the rotations out slowly, falling to the Hawkeyes in the team score 73.000-72.750. C.J. Maestas took second on floor with a score of 14.850, followed by teammates Chandler Eggleston and Alex Varga who tied for third with a score of 14.800.
In the third rotation, C.J. Maestas took home the title and made history by setting not only a school record on rings, but the NCAA record as well with a score of 16.450. Mike Wilner followed in second with his season best of 15.500. Joey Peters came in fourth with his season best of 14.750.
"As I said when he broke the school record last week, he couldn't be more deserving," said coach Spring. "This was the first event he has been able to compete on at full strength this season. Rings has always been his best and he really showed that tonight."
On vault Fred Hartville achieved his season best of 15.150 and took the title. Eggleston came in second with a score of 14.950.
Maestas continued his success on the parallel bars, taking the title with his season high of 14.850. Valdez took second for the Illini with a 14.800.
Valdez dominated the high bar, taking first with a score of 15.550, his career high. Chandler Eggleston followed in third with a 14.400.
Maestas' consistent performance earned him the all-around title, scoring 89.200.
The Illini return to action next weekend in University Park, Pa. to take on Penn State at 3 p.m. CT on Saturday Feb. 15.