No. 2 Men's Gymnastics Sets Season High Score in Victory Over No. 7 Ohio State
Feb. 24, 2008
COLUMBUS, Ohio - A week after struggling to its lowest score of the season, the No. 2 Penn State men's gymnastics team bounced back in a major way versus No. 7 Ohio State, posting a season high score of 360.550 in a win over the Buckeyes at St. John Arena in Columbus, Ohio. The Nittany Lions sparkled under the spotlight of the Big Ten Network, setting team season best marks in the still rings, vault, and high bar.
The Big Ten Network will air the meet, which also featured the Penn State's women's team taking on its Buckeye counterparts, tape delayed on Thurs., Feb. 28 at 6 p.m. and on Sun., March 2 at 4 p.m.
The win was Penn State second's consecutive road victory over a Big Ten opponent, after beating No. 5 Illinois last week in Champaign, Ill. despite scoring just a 352.300. The Nittany Lions' score of 360.550 is the third highest in the nation this year to date, behind only Stanford's 361.650 (at Pacific Coast Classic) and 361.350 (at Stanford Open).
Individually, Nittany Lions won three of six events and junior Casey Sandy (Brampton, Ont.) captured his fifth all-around crown of the season. Sandy, who entered the meet ranked fifth in the nation in the high bar, won the high bar with a team season high score of 15.250. He also finished second in the floor exercise (15.400) and the parallel bars (15.150).
Senior Vladi Klurman (North Miami Beach, Fla.) also established a team season best score, claiming the vault title with a stellar mark of 16.250. Senior Santiago Lopez (Cibola del Mar, Mex.) (16.050) and Sandy (15.900) completed a Penn State top three sweep, affirming the Nittany Lion's No. 1 team ranking in the event.
After competing sparingly throughout the season due to injury, senior and five-time All-American Tommy Ramos (Guaynabo, P.R.) served noticed that he is back by winning his first rings title of the season with a team season high score of 15.700.
The victory also featured some impressive performances by some of head coach Randy Jepson's underclassmen. Freshman Warren Yang (Nepean, Ont.), competing in just his second collegiate meet, finished third in the floor exercise with a score of 15.350. Redshirt freshman Jason Chu (Los Angeles, Calif.) set personal bests in the pommel horse (14.450), finishing second, and in the still rings (15.300), placing tied for third with teammates Derek Helsby (Orlando, Fla.) and Casey Sandy. Sophomore Matt Greenfield (Villanova, Pa.) not only established a career best score in the high bar (15.150) but also a team high until it was broken a few competitors later by Casey Sandy.
The Nittany Lions get a rare but welcome week off before they host No. 12 Navy and William & Mary in a tri-meet on Sat., March 8 at 2 p.m. at Rec Hall. Last season, Penn State defeated Navy (212.800-191.700) and William & Mary (212.800-191.750) in a meet at the Tribe's home venue, Kaplan Arena, in Williamsburg, Va. The Nittany Lions hold a combined 61-10 record in their all-time series versus Navy and William & Mary.