No. 5 Men's Gymnastics Claims 11th Consecutive West Point Open Title
Jan. 16, 2009
WEST POINT, N.Y. - The fifth-ranked Penn State men's gymnastics team reigned again as champions of the West Point Open, compiling a score of 345.20 to capture its 11th consecutive title on Friday night at host Army's Christl Arena in West Point, N.Y.
The Nittany Lions continued their dominance of east region teams, topping Temple (329.50), Navy (329.15), Springfield College (326.20), Army (317.75), and M.I.T. (312.90) to gain the 2009 West Point Open crown. Penn State won all six events as a team while four Nittany Lions secured event titles.
Freshman Miguel Pineda (Galloway, Ohio) highlighted Penn State's showing, placing first in the still rings (14.500) en route to winning the all-around title (84.700), the first of his collegiate career. He also finished third in the pommel horse (14.700), 11th in the floor exercise (14.150) and parallel bars (13.500), 18th in the vault (14.900), and 27th in the high bar (12.900).
Competing in just four events, defending NCAA All-Around champion Casey Sandy (Brampton, Ont.) won the parallel bars with a score of 14.950. He also placed second in the pommel horse (14.850), third in the rings (14.250), and fourth in the high bar (14.500).
Junior Nick Virbitsky (Harrisburg, Pa.) made it two-for-two in the floor exercise in 2009, winning the event with a score of 15.150 after placing first in the season opener versus Army last weekend (14.950).
Freshman Matt Albrecht (Guelph, Ont.) continued his torrid start to his college career on Friday evening, winning the vault (15.900) while advancing to the individual event finals in the parallel bars (5th, 14.000) and floor exercise (7th, 14.250).
Junior Noam Shaham (Kfar Saba, Israel) placed third in the all-around (82.400). His top performance came on the high bar, as he placed sixth with a score of 14.400. Classmate Allen Harris (Lancaster, Pa.) advanced to the individual event finals in three of the four events in which he competed during the team finals, placing second in the floor exercise (14.950), sixth in the parallel bars (13.800), and seventh in the vault (15.600).
Competition at the West Point Open resumes on Sat., Jan. 17 at 7 p.m. with the individual event finals. The top eight finishers from each of Friday night's events advance to vie for individual honors on Saturday evening. The complete list of Penn State gymnasts who have qualified is as follows:
Floor Exercise: Allen Harris, Matt Albrecht, Noam Shaham