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Derek Helsby
Derek Helsby

Class:
Senior

Hometown:
Orlando, Fla.

High School:
Lake Highland

Height:
5-7

Position:
AA


CAREER HIGHS
Floor Exercise: 9.400 at William & Mary (March 13, 2005)
Pommel Horse: 9.650 vs. Japan (March 1, 2005)
Rings: 9.550 at NCAA Championships (April 12, 2007)
Vault: 9.250 at William & Mary (March 13, 2005)
Parallel Bars: 9.650 at Big Ten Championships (March 30, 2007)
High Bar: 9.700 at William & Mary (March 3, 2007)
All-Around: 54.825 at NCAA Championships (April 7, 2006)

PENN STATE CAREER
2007: Tied for third place in the pommel horse (9.200) at the team finals of the 2007 NCAA Championships...Also scored a 9.500 in the still rings, a 9.000 in the parallel bars, and a 9.100 in the high bar in the team finals, helping Penn State capture its 12th national championship...Earned a career-high score of 9.550 in the still rings to aid Penn State in achieving first place finish in the NCAA Qualfier...Placed first in the parallel bars in the team finals of the 2007 Big Ten Championships with a career-high score of 9.650...Finished fourth in the all-around at the 2007 Big Ten Championships, earning All-Big Ten honors for the second consecutive year...Also established a career-high in the high bar in 2007, registering a 9.700 in a dual meet at William & Mary...Finished the season nationally ranked No. 9 in the high bar (9.020), No. 11 in the pommel horse (tie, 8.720), No. 18 in the parallel bars (9.000), and No. 19 in the still rings (tie, 9.350)...Played a major role in making Penn State the No. 1 ranked pommel horse team in the nation by earning seven top-three finishes, including taking a share of the title versus William & Mary...Had his best performance of the year in a dual meet win over Illinois, placing first in the parallel bars (9.350), second in the pommel horse (9.250) and high bar (9.400), and third in the still rings (9.400)...Honored on Academic All-Big Ten Team.

2006: Earned All-America status in four events at the 2006 NCAA Championships: all-around (3rd), pommel horse (3rd), rings (6th), parallel bars (8th)...Won the pommel horse at the team finals of the 2006 NCAA Championships (9.075)...Placed second in the all-around (54.000) and on the pommel horse (9.000) and third on rings (9.425) to help Penn State finish second in its NCAA Qualifier...Won the all-around versus Ohio State and Stanford and finished second or third in four other meets...Captured the pommel horse titles at the West Point Open (9.150) and versus Stanford (9.400) and second place against California (9.250)...Finished tied for third on the horse at the 2006 Big Ten Championships (8.775)...Tied for second on the rings versus California (9.550) and placed third against Ohio State (9.350) and at the Big Ten Championships (9.400)...Placed second or third on the parallel bars in four meets...Earned three third-place finishes on the high bar...Established career highs on the rings, parallel bars, high bar, and in the all-around ...Finished the season nationally ranked third on the pommel horse (9.000), tied for 11th on the rings (9.290), and fifth in the all-around (52.150)...Named Big Ten Men's Co-Gymnast of the Week (2/22) after the win over Stanford...Won the inaugural Gene Wettstone Award for the team's Most Outstanding Gymnast in 2006...An Academic All-Big Ten honoree.

2005: Competed in each event over the course of the season but performed the most on the pommel horse and the rings...Placed in the top three at five meets on the pommel horse, including a first place finish at the West Point Open...Posted his highest score on the horse, a 9.650, against Japan, while placing second...Placed third on the pommel horse in the team finals of the Big Ten Championships, posting a 9.575...Ranked No. 9 nationally on the horse with a qualifying average of 9.402...In his first collegiate meet, won the rings with a score of 9.200...Notched a season-best mark on the rings, a 9.225, at the NCAA Team Championships...Garnered two first-place finishes in the all-around, including winning the title at William & Mary with a season-high score of 54.250...Earned third place in the all-around vs. Army (51.900)...Used a score of 53.675 to finish seventh in the all-around in the team finals of the Big Ten Championships...Placed fifth in the all-around at the NCAA Qualifier with a score of 53.425...Posted a season-best 9.400 in the floor exercise and 9.250 on the vault vs. William & Mary...Saved his top performance on the high bar for the last, recording a season-high 9.050 at the NCAA Team Championships...Demonstrated his versatility and stamina by competing in every event at the NCAA Qualifier.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL CAREER
2007: Represented the United States at the 2007 World University Games in Bangkok, Thailand...Won a bronze medal in the individual pommel horse competition with a score of 14.575...In the team portion of the competition, led the United States with top scores in the pommel horse (14.400) and the parallel bars (14.050), helping Team USA to a seventh-place finish...Placed 18th in the all-around (167.150) at the 2007 VISA Championships, with his top finish coming in the pommel horse (9th, 28.550)...Also placed 14th in the still rings (29.000) and 22nd in the parallel bars (28.450)...Finished in 17th place in the all-around (83.000) at the 2007 Winter Cup Challenge in Las Vegas, Nev., scoring highest on the vault (14.700) and the still rings (14.350).

GYMNASTICS BACKGROUND
In international competition, Helsby has competed at the 2004 Pacific Alliance Championships, the Junior International Meet, and the Junior Pan-American Championships...Has appeared at the U.S. Championships since 2001 as well as the Junior Olympic Nationals each year...He has also competed in the Winter Cup Challenge since 2001... at the 2002 Junior Pan-American, he was second on the pommel horse and fourth in the all-around in addition to being part of the first-place team...In the 2003 Canada vs. Germany vs. USA Invite, he was third in the all-around and second on the high bar and again on the first-place team...At the 2004 Pacific Alliance, he was second on still rings...Took third at the Junior Olympic Nationals on pommel horse in 2001 and fifth in 2003...Took four seconds and a sixth at the 2003 USA Championships and three seconds and two thirds at the 2004 USA Championships...Was the 2002 Florida State Champion and the 2002 Region VIII Champion.

PERSONAL
The son of Paul and Kathy Helsby...Derek Helsby was born in Orlando, Fla. on March 1, 1986...Has two brothers, Justin and Blaine...Majoring in Computer Science.

QUOTING COACH JEPSON
"Derek is a senior with great experience. He had a terrific competition this summer at the World University Games, winning a bronze medal in the pommel horse against the world's elite competitors. Derek is very good on pommel horse, his rings are solid, and he will do a good job for us on parallel bars and high bar. We are glad he is back for his senior season and we look for really great things from Derek."

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