April 20, 2012
Illinois rallied from more than two points down with two rotations to go to claim the 2012 NCAA Men’s Gymnastics Championship on Friday night. It marked the Illini’s first national title since 1989 and the third championship by a Big Ten school in the last six years (Penn State in 2007, Michigan in 2010).
The Illini finished the session with a score of 358.850, racing past second-place and host Oklahoma, which finished with 357.450 points, during the final rotation. Penn State and Michigan also competed in the team final, with the NIttany Lions placing third with 354.800 points and the Wolverines finishing sixth with 351.050 points.
Trailing by more than two points heading into the pommel horse, the team’s second-to-last event, Illinois posted a program record score of 60.750 to close the deficit to within a point. A 58.750 team total on the high bar, their final event, allowed the Illini to secure the team championship, the 10th in program history.
Illinois, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State and Penn State qualified for a combined 34 spots in the individual event finals on Saturday. The top 10 individuals, including ties, on each event from Friday’s team finals advanced to Saturday night’s individual event finals, which is set to begin at 8 p.m. ET. Friday’s complete session results with top 10 event finishers can be found at the top of the page.