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Jan. 26, 2009
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State senior all-arounder Casey Sandy (Brampton, Ont.) has been named Big Ten Gymnast of the Week for the seventh time in his career, tying a conference record held by Minnesota's Guillermo Alvarez (2002-05). The seven-time All-American was recognized with the award for his standout performances in the No. 3 Nittany Lions' 348.900-348.350 victory over No. 2 Michigan last weekend.
Casey Sandy was true to form as the defending Big Ten and NCAA All-Around champion in helping the Nittany Lions down the conference rival Wolverines. The 2008 Penn State Male Athlete of the Year thrilled the partisan Rec Hall crowd of 1,714 by winning individual event titles in the vault (15.950), parallel bars (14.700), and high bar (15.450) en route to claiming the all-around crown with a score of 90.000, the highest total in the nation thus far this season.
Sandy's contributions were not only critical to Penn State's success versus Michigan but came when they were needed the most. Down to the final competitor of the meet and needing a monumental high bar effort to overtake Michigan, Sandy came through in the clutch, posting a career-high and nation-best score of 15.450 to rally the Nittany Lions to victory.
A top contender for the 2009 Nissen-Emery Award, Sandy has fashioned one of the greatest careers in the storied history of Penn State men's gymnastics. In 36 career meets, he has earned a remarkable 120 top three finishes and claimed 65 title wins.
Penn State will return to road action next weekend when it visits Minneapolis, Minn. for a dual meet with No. 5 Minnesota on Sat., Jan. 31. The clash of Big Ten foes is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the home of the Golden Gophers, the Sports Pavilion. The journey to the Twin Cities will be the first of two this season for the Nittany Lions, as the National Collegiate Championships will be hosted by Minnesota from April 16-18. A year ago, Penn State dominated Minnesota in a dual at Rec Hall, 354.200-343.350 thanks in part to event wins by Casey Sandy in the floor exercise, parallel bars, and high bar.