- Allison Farrand/Daily
By Alex Taylor, Daily Sports Writer
Published February 23, 2014
With the No. 2 Michigan men’s gymnastics team out of action this weekend, two team members took to Las Vegas to participate in the 2014 Winter Cup Challenge.
The event, sponsored by USA gymnastics, brought together the best gymnasts at all levels from around the country. Juniors Stacey Ervin and Adrian de los Angeles represented Michigan, and between them, took home three top-10 finishes.
But one left with an injury that held him out of the final two events.
De los Angeles was in the process of his last floor dismount when he came up short and undertwisted, landing awkwardly on his leg. As a precaution, he didn’t participate in the last two events of the night and was taken to the hospital for testing. He will be further evaluated Monday to determine the full extent of the injury.
“I think we could have done a lot better when you combine the two days together,” said Michigan coach Kurt Golder. “On the second day I would give Adrian an A-plus. He was just doing great until he ran into difficulty with his dismount on floor.”
Before the injury, De los Angeles had notched a third-place finish on parallel bars with a final round score of 14.74. In the preliminary rounds, he recorded a score of 15.55, good enough for first place at the time. He also took first in the preliminary rounds on pommel horse with a score of 15.15, but did not compete in the finals because of the injury.
“Adrian was a mix (of good and bad),” Golder said. “He had some really good events ... but on the other events he had trouble. It was an all or nothing with him.”
Ervin, who earned U.S. National team honors last year, finished tied for seventh on vault and 10th on parallel bars in the finals. In the preliminary rounds, he scored a 15.25 on vault, good for second place.
“Stacey, the first day, had a lot of trouble warming up vault, and then he nailed his vault, did a really good job,” Golder said. “I was so proud of him. He also had trouble on parallel bars warming up on one skill, and he nailed that. So overcoming that adversity is really good.”
Michigan signees Marvin Kimble, Dmitri Belanovski and Marty Stretch also participated in the event. The trio comprises the top-ranked 2014-15 recruiting class according to StickItMedia. Kimble was the 2013 Junior Olympic All-Around champion, while Belanovski and Stretch both earned championships at the 2013 Junior P&G Championships.
Kimble, who was named to the U.S. National team after his performances, led the all-around after the preliminary round before ultimately finishing in fifth place with a two-day score of 171.90. Kimble also placed fourth in parallel bars and seventh in high bar.
Senior Sam Mikulak, a member of the U.S. National team, did not participate in the event, instead turning his attention to next week’s AT&T American Cup where he will represent the United States.