Felix Aronovich Named Big Ten Gymnast and Freshman of the Week
Jan. 11, 2010
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State freshman all-arounder Felix Aronovich (Kiryat Bialik, Israel) has been honored as Big Ten Gymnast and Freshman of the Week, the conference office announced on Monday. He was recognized with the award for his standout performance in the No. 6 Nittany Lions' 341.000-314.350 season-opening victory over Army last weekend.
Claiming his first career Big Ten accolade for efforts in his collegiate debut caps a whirlwind past few weeks for the Israeli national. In late December, Aronovich completed his compulsory stint with the Israeli Army and then, one week later, enrolled as a student at Penn State and joined the men's gymnastics team for training. With just a handful of practices under his belt, he earned a spot in the line-up in three events for the 2010 season opener against Army, winning titles in the pommel horse and parallel bars. He also tied for fourth place in the rings. In acknowledgement of his impressive showing, Aronovich was presented with the Gene Wettstone Award following the meet.
Born in Odessa, Ukraine, Aronovich is an accomplished international competitor, taking part in the European Championships from 2004-2009 and in the World Championships in 2006. He finished ninth in the pommel horse in the World Cup event in Cotbus, Germany in 2008. He also earned a second place finish in the all-around at the Israeli National Championships and placed third in the all-around at the 2009 Maccabiah Games in Israel.
Penn State will be back in action this weekend when it travels to compete at the West Point Open on Jan. 15-16. Hosted by the United States Military Academy, the Nittany Lions have dominated the annual competition, winning 11 consecutive team titles. The team competition is scheduled for Friday with the individual event finals to be held on Saturday. Both competitions are set for 7 p.m. at the home of the Army Black Knights, Christl Arena.