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Stanford Men’s Gymnastics: One Blemish to a Near Perfect Season

Stanford Men’s Gymnastics suffered defeat at the hands of the best team in the nation.

Rob Ferguson-USA TODAY Sports

The No.2 ranked Cardinal faced its only bump in the road last Saturday when facing the only team that could feasibly cause them trouble: No. 1 ranked Oklahoma.

Overall, Stanford did not have its best day, finishing with a total score of 435.800, nearly seven points below the school's seasonal average. Much of that can be explained by the fact that the Cardinal was without its top gymnast and NCAA's No. 1 all-around gymnast Akash Modi. Compliment that with Oklahoma posting the third highest score in NCAA history of 452.350, well above their 447.917 average, and that spells a recipe for disaster.

The Sooners took home the crown on five of six events on the night, both as a team and individually.

The Cardinal's single victory came on vault (74.200), where junior Gabe Flores stole the top spot with his career-best 15.250. Respectively, sophomore Ryan Sheppard matched his career-best of 14.750.

Both Sheppard (14.900) and junior Drew Willoughby (15.150) set career-bests on pommel horse, as Sophomore Jacob Barrus earned a personal career-best score of 13.650 on parallel bars.
Fifth year senior Brian Knott tallied a career-best 15.200 for his high-bar routine, and junior Jordan DeClerk earned himself a career-best on rings of 15.050.

After a ten week grueling one meet per week stretch, the Cardinal will now take a well-deserved respite until Saturday, April 2nd, when they will host the MPSF Championships in their own Burnham Pavilion. Modi will have his opportunity to take a crack at the No. 1 Sooners then.