Cory Paterson prepares for college debut


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Canada is not known for its gymnasts, but one freshman will try to solidify himself as a top recruit for Iowa and a legitimate member of the Canadian National team as the season nears.

The Black and Gold meet is less than a week away, and the gymnasts have worked to perfect their routines to demonstrate in front of judges for the first time this season. Head coach JD Reive and assistant coach Ben Ketelsen look forward to the début of one freshman in particular — Cory Paterson.

He has only been with the team for a few months but has shown all the promise in the world.

Ketelsen was the first to meet Paterson in Canada and told him and his father to visit Iowa.

“I was pretty involved in bringing Cory and his dad to the university,” Ketelsen said. “I saw a lot of good basics and good lines. He had a back issue prior, so his difficulty was off, but he had good solid basics and good solid lines, which defines a person as a gymnast.”

“I initially contacted Iowa and some other schools, because Canada is off the radar when it comes to gymnastics,” Paterson said.

During his initial Hawkeye visit, he became sold on the school and Reive’s plan for the future of Iowa gymnastics.

“I love the team, I love JD’s plan, and you can really tell he is building a strong team,” Paterson said. “It is a team I felt like I can make an impact on. I just loved everything about the trip.”

An impact is just what Reive is looking for next week at the Hawks’ first intrasquad meet.

Paterson has been preparing his routine for the past couple weeks, and Reive has seen improvements.

Right now, the coaches are having Paterson focus on all-around. not one specific event.

“He was a really good get for us,” Reive said. “He has a lot of gymnastics, and we’re honing some of his skills to get him stronger, but his skills were something that we were very weak on at the time we recruited him, and it is going to make a pretty significant difference in our lineup.”

When asked if Paterson would have an immediate impact, Reive said:“Yeah, definitely.”

Paterson joins an exclusive list of international recruits because Iowa doesn’t really recruit from other countries.

“Canada is the easiest place to recruit as far as international,” Reive said. “A lot of the standardized testing and the process is the same. There is not a language barrier. So, international recruiting isn’t something we intentionally seek out, but there have been a couple of good kids just north of the border, and it worked out for Cory.”

With the help of the coaches here at Iowa, Paterson will continue to improve; he has a goal of making it to the 2016 Olympics to represent Canada.

“Getting an education was always my main goal,” Paterson said. “Olympics is more of a dream. Whether it happens or not doesn’t matter, because I am getting an education here.”

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