With an opening 64.5 on pommel horse, it looked like it might be much of the same for Ohio State. Their second-lowest event score of the year put them in a bit of a hole -- though it was one that they would climb out of. When all was said and done, the Buckeyes defeated Stanford, the No. 2 team in the country, by a score of 402.15-400.85.
It was Alec Yoder's (B1G Gymnast of the Week) day as his 84.1 all-around score was the third-highest we've seen across the entire NCAA this year. Ironically enough, despite the fantastic performance, Yoder didn't win a single event outright. He did, however tie teammates for titles on VT (tied w/Alex Wilson) & PB (tied w/Sean Melton).
Alec Yoder was named B1G Gymnast of the Week (graphic via @bigten on Twitter)
Winning other titles for Ohio State were Sean Neighbarger (FX), David Szarvas (PH) and Melton (SR).
"It’s good to get a win against a team of this caliber, especially on the road,” head coach Rustam Sharipov told OhioStateBuckeyes.com. "I’m so proud of this team. We’ve started to click a bit, but there are still a couple of things that we can clean up. I’m excited for our guys but this is just the start. We still have more work to put in, but we can definitely reach higher heights."
A win is a win, especially one against a team as good as Stanford. The Buckeyes should be able to use this one as a momentum shifter as we inch closer to the postseason.
Speaking of Stanford, it certainly wasn't their day. You can point the finger toward SR & VT as the reason why the Cardinal broke down. They rank top-five nationally on both (including second on VT) which makes it more surprising. Robert Neff suffered an uncharacteristic 11.35 on rings (and still put up an 81.4 in the all-around) which is roughly a two point (give or take) swing. They also had to count two vaults of 13.25 and lower.
They were able to finish the meet on a strong note as they competed well on PB (68.25) & HB (67.65). Also, an impressive side note: not once this year has Stanford scored below a 67.85 on PB. Having a nearly-guaranteed 68 on that event is a big help.
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