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William and Mary

Tribe’s Gygax Advances to Second Round of NCAA All-Around Competition

West Point, N.Y. - Senior William and Mary gymnast Derek Gygax (Stevensville, Md.) led a seven-person Tribe contingent at Thursday’s first-round action at the NCAA Championships hosted by the United States Military Academy by qualifying for Friday’s second-round action in the all-around.

Gygax, one of eight national finalists for the Nissen-Emery Award (given annually to the top senior men’s gymnast in the nation), placed fourth overall at the event with a six-event total of 81.650. Gygax’s top event showing was the parallel bars, were he placed 12th overall during the session with a mark of 14.10.

Thursday event was divided between two sessions, as six teams competed in each, along with selected individual qualifiers. The top three-team scores from each session advance to compete for the team title tomorrow (Friday) evening. The top three individual scores (who weren’t members of advancing teams) from each event also advance to Friday’s action.

Gygax was the only Tribe gymnast to advance through to Friday’s action. Junior team co-captain Andy Hunter (Tallahassee, Fla.) qualified for four individual events and was strong throughout the day. He tied Gygax for 12th on the parallel bars (14.10), while he finished 16th on the pommel horse with a mark of 13.45. He also competed on the floor (14.30, 20th) and rings (13.65, 25th).

Junior Dave Ellis (Braintree, Mass.) competed in three events (floor, 14.05, 25th; vault, 15.15, 25th; rings 13.10, 32nd), while fellow classmate Alex Egerter (Sacramento, Calif.) and freshman Vince Smurro (Manalapan, N.J.) each qualified for a pair of events. Egerter posted a 14.50 mark on the vault and scored 13.25 on the parallel bars, while Smurro earned a 13.05 on the high bar and a 10.90 on the parallel bars.

The Tribe’s efforts were rounded out by junior Josh Friend (Gywneed Valley, Pa.) who competed the floor exercise (13.25), while sophomore Steve Deutsch (Glenview, Ill.) worked the rings along with freshman Futa Ikeda (Sandy, Utah) with the pair scoring 12.80 and 12.05, respectively.

Gygax will compete Friday evening, starting at 7pm.

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