Categorized | Club, Elite, Featured, Men's Gymnastics

Wiskus, Briones, Huang & Juda Capture Level 10 JE Titles

Posted on 13 May 2017 by admin

Shane Wiskus went wire-to-wire to defend his Level 10 Junior Elite title at the 2017 JO Nationals in Kissimmee, FL.  The future Minnesota Gopher is now only one contest away from completing a grand sweep of all the major Junior titles over the past two seasons (JOs/P&Gs).  Wiskus (143.85) clinched his second straight JE AA championship by compiling the highest scores in Saturday’s technical sequences (56.25) in the 18-year-old division.  His two-day total was over six points better than runner-up Brennan Pantazis (137.55) and Griffin Kehler (135.20).  To accompany his AA trophy, Wiskus also earned the top scores on PH, PB and HB.  Also winning event titles were Sean Neighbarger (FX), Parker Clayton (SR) and Joel Diaz (VT).

Iowa signee Bennet Huang (141.25) captured his first JE title over Brody Malone (137.80) and Max Andryushchenko (137.50) in the 17-year-old division.  Huang’s winning efforts on FX and PH propelled him to the championship.  Last year’s 15-year-old division champ Vitaliy Guimaraes placed 4th (137.25) and also was a double event winner on VT and HB (T1st).  Ian Gunther (SR), Joshua Davis (PB) and Brady Yamamoto (T1st-HB) won the remaining two event titles.

2014 Level 8 (age 12) JE champion Brandon Briones (141.60) prevailed in the 16-year-old division over David Pochinka (137.45) and Riley Loos (137.05).  Briones was a double event winner on FX and VT, and also placed in the top 5 on all six events.  His two-day total was the second highest of the weekend behind Wiskus.  Briones was the top-finishing Junior (10th) at Winter Cup this past February, so his stock is rising rapidly.  Runner-up Pochinka was also a double winner on SR and PB.  Other event winners were Lazarus Barnhill (PH) and Jordan Williams (HB).

Another rising star is Paul Juda, who claimed his first AA title at JO Nationals.  Juda (139.15) won the 15-year-old JE division over last year’s Level 9 champ Sam Phillips (137.60) and Colt Walker (136.75).  Juda (FX, HB) and and Walker (SR, VT) were double event winners.  Phillips (PB) and John Chou (PH) took top honors on their respective events.

NCAA Men’s Gymnastics will be receiving quite a bounty, as several of the gymnasts mentioned in this review will be reporting for duty in the fall.  Click here for a list of incoming freshmen for the 2018 season.

  • Wiskus – Minnesota
  • Pantazis – Penn State
  • Kehler – Nebraska
  • Neighbarger – Ohio State
  • Clayton – Penn State
  • Diaz – Illinois
  • Huang – Iowa
  • Andryushchenko – Ohio State
  • Dee – Minnesota 
  • Meeker – Minnesota
  • Peters – Nebraska

42 Level 10 JE gymnasts qualify to the 2017 P&G Championships.  The top 22 placing gymnasts (in rank order) are taken from the (15-16) division, and the top 14 from the (17-18) division.  An additional 6 qualify by placing in the top 6 (AA) from the combined age groups at July’s National Qualifier.

The Level 10 Junior National Team will be selected upon conclusion of the P&G Championships.  11 Junior Elite gymnasts will earn inclusion based on their rank-order finish at P&Gs, and 3 will be selected by a committee.

  • Level 10 (age 15) – 4 gymnasts
  • Level 10 (age 16) – 3 gymnasts
  • Level 10 (age 17) – 3 gymnasts
  • Level 10 (age 18) – 1 gymnast

All four Level 10 day 1 leaders hung on to capture JO Division titles.  Colton Dee became the second Minnesota signee to win a JO Nationals AA title.  Dee (159.95) won his second straight title over Nebraska signee Zach Peters (158.05), Daniel Lee (157.25) and fellow Minnesota recruit Henry Meeker (155.65) in the 18-year-old division.  The event titles were evenly shared by Dee (PB), Peters (FX), Lee (HB), Justin Jepsen (PH), Mitchell Monahan (SR) and Charlie Giles (VT).  Casimir Buske (155.25) prevailed by a slim margin over Mitchell Conzemius (154.90) and Noah Scigliano (154.00) in the 17-year-old division.  The event titles were again evenly shared among Buske (HB), Zach Ziolkowski (FX), Daniel Clark (PH), Edward Silvestar (SR), Teaanou Gonzalez (VT), Zion English (T1st-PB) and Ian Johnson (T1st-PB).

Jimmy Mitchell (159.70) also went wire-to-wire to win the 16-year-old division over Jakob Murray (158.10) and Garrett Kasiski (154.60).  Mitchell was a double event winner on PB and HB.  Also winning event titles were Jalen Peterson (FX), Will Lavanakul (PH), Giovanni Gambatese (SR) and Austin Luke (VT).  Maxim Ryzhuk (160.75) edged out Logan Myers (159.20) and Gavin LaRoche (157.65) to earn the title in the 15-year-old division.  Ryzhuk added gold on HB and had four top-3 event finishes.  Myers was a double winner on SR and PB.  Donovan Hewitt (VT), Camron Sallade (PH), Paul Rudie (T1st-FX) and David Rauchwerger (FX) were victorious on the remaining events.

The 2017 JO Nationals will conclude tomorrow (Sunday) with the Level 8/9 AA/Event Finals.

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