Chalk Talk #9: U-M Takes on Fellow 2009 Big Ten Co-Champs No. 3 Illinois

March 9, 2010

Saturday, March 13 -- at No. 3 Illinois (Champaign, Ill.), 2 p.m. CST
Live Video (Fee) | Live Stats

The No. 4-ranked University of Michigan men's gymnastics team (7-3, 5-1 Big Ten) is back in action following a week off from competition against Big Ten rival No. 3-ranked Illinois this Saturday (March 13) at 2 p.m. CST at the H. E. Kenney Gym in Champaign, Ill.

In 2009, the Wolverines met the Illini four times in competition with a 2-1-1 record, including a tie at the Big Ten Championships held in Ann Arbor. In their last meeting of 2009 at the NCAA Championships team final, the Wolverines bested the Illini, 361.500- 359.300, to win national runner-up. U-M faced Illinois earlier this season at the season-opening Windy City Invitational, where the Illini bested the Wolverines by a 2.400-point margin.

Someone to Lean On
Justin and Torrance Laury never expected to compete together at the University of Michigan since they were five years apart, but an injury to older brother Justin allowed them to share one season together. Torrance helped his older brother return from injury and the two propelled Michigan to a fourth-place finish at the 2007 NCAA Championships. Together, the Laurys have been shining examples of hard work, determination and brotherhood. [ Read More ]

Caldwell Earns Wolverines' Fifth Big Ten Weekly Award
After setting a season high on the floor (15.15) and collecting two top-five finishes, fifth-year Kent Caldwell (Charlotte, N.C./Charlotte Latin) earned Michigan's fifth Big Ten weekly honor of the 2010 season. The award, which is Caldwell's first of his career, comes after two Gymnast of the Week wins for junior Chris Cameron (Winter Haven, Fla./Lake Region) and one for fellow junior Thomas Kelley (Libertyville, Ill./Libertyville) in addition to a Freshman of the Week accolade for Rohan Sebastian (Oklahoma City, Okla./Bishop McGuinness Catholic).

Cameron Finishes Third All-Around, Named to U.S. National Team
Chris Cameron finished third place in the all-around at the Winter Cup Invitational held Thursday and Saturday (Feb. 4-6) in Las Vegas, Nev. Cameron's third place finish is the highest finish ever for a Wolverine and the highest finish of any current NCAA competitor. Senior Mel Anton Santander (Southborough, Mass./Algonquin Regional) also had a strong showing in Las Vegas, hitting all twelve routines he competed and finishing tenth in the all-around.

Big Stage. Big Ten. Big Vault.
On Jan 24, Caldwell debuted a Yurchenko half on vault with a one-and-a-half twist. The vault, the second most difficult vault being performed by a Wolverine, is the only one currently being performed by any gymnast in the Big Ten conference and carries a 16.4 degree of difficulty.

Goldberg and Chan Re-elected Team Captains
For the second year in a row, seniors David Chan (Singapore/Hale School) and Phillip Goldberg (Dalton, Ga./McCallie) will captain the Wolverines. Chan and Goldberg were elected by the vote of their teammates after captaining the 2008-09 team to a share of the Big Ten title and a second-place finish at the NCAA Championships.

The Accidental All-American
Senior co-captain David Chan is currently featured on in an article about the unique circumstances that lead him to become a two-time All-America honoree and team captain for the Wolverines. [ Read the story! ]

Strong Finish
After the host Wolverines claimed a share of the team title and juniors Thomas Kelley and Chris Cameron finished 1-2 in the all-around at the 2009 Big Ten Championships, the team set season highs two days in a row to finish in second place at the NCAA Championships in Minneapolis, Minn. The Wolverines NCAA haul also included five All-America honorees in Cameron, Joe Catrambone, Phillip Goldberg, Adam Hamers, and Kelley.

International Wolverines
Two Wolverines have competed internationally this fall, freshman Rohan Sebastian (Oklahoma City, Okla./Bishop McGuinness Catholic) and Chris Cameron. Sebastian represented Ireland at the 2009 World Gymnastics Championships in London, England, finishing in 54th place in the all-around competition with a total score of 76.800.

While Cameron finished in seventh place on the pommel horse with a 14.200 representing the U.S. national team in the finals of the DTB Grand Prix event. Competing in a field that included the top three from the 2009 World Championships, Cameron held his own, using his trademark Thomas flairs and clean execution. [ Watch the video of Cameron's DTB performance ]

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Contact: Scott Bregman (734) 763-4423