Cardinal Finishes Second
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Competing at the 2021 MPSF Championships on Saturday, Stanford finished as the runner-up after managing a team score of 411.550 – 1.200 points behind Oklahoma at 412.750. Host Air Force finished third at 388.350, while California took fourth with a score of 386.950.
The conference title was the ninth consecutive crown for Oklahoma.
While the team title will return to Oklahoma, Stanford won five individual titles, including a pair from juniors Brody Malone and Ian Gunther.
Malone, the 2021 MPSF Gymnast of the Year, won the horizontal bar title with a 14.400 before eventually capturing the all-around title with a combined mark of 83.050. The native of Summerville, Ga. took third on pommel horse (13.700), fourth on parallel bars (13.950) and fifth on rings (13.900).
Gunther won the pommel horse title with a season-best mark of 13.900 before hitting for a season-high 14.350 on still rings to finish first. The Cardinal took each of the top three spots on pommel horse, with J.R. Chou posting a career-high 13.850 to take second in front of Malone.
In addition to the two first-place finishes, Gunther placed second on horizontal bar with a mark of 13.600.
Senior captain Blake Sun captured the event title in his only event – posting a 14.450 on parallel bars. The Nissen-Emery Award finalist finished ahead of three Sooner gymnasts to take the honor.
Sophomore Brandon Briones joined Malone in the all-around, totaling an 82.850 to finish second overall. Briones took third on floor with a season-best score of 14.350 and also turned in a season-high 14.250 on rings to finish second behind Gunther.
Sophomore Zach Martin finished second on vault with a career-best tying 14.750, while Briones and Curran Phillips finished tied for fourth with scores of 14.550.
Briones, a native of Gilbert, Ariz., recorded one final top five finish on horizontal bar, taking fourth with a score of 13.400.
Stanford will now prepare for the NCAA Championships from April 16-17 in Minneapolis, Minn.