Raque and Vazquez Earn Big Ten Weekly Gymnastics Honors
Feb. 21, 2011
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State sophomore Parker Raque (Louisville, Ky.) and redshirt freshman Francisco Vazquez (San Juan, P.R.) have been recognized with Big Ten weekly gymnastics honors for their standout efforts in the No. 3 Nittany Lions' 352.100-351.000 road victory over No. 2 Illinois last weekend. Raque was named Big Ten Co-Gymnast of the Week while Vazquez earned Big Ten Freshman of the Week accolades, each for the first time in his career.
Raque contributed to season-high team scores with exceptional performances in the vault and floor exercise. He won his third vault title of the season, posting a career-high score of 16.000, leading Penn State to a top three sweep in the event and placed second in the floor exercise with a score of 15.100, just off his career best by .1 of a point. Raque also placed fifth in the still rings, playing a part in the Nittany Lions tying their season high and upholding their national No. 1 ranking in the event.
One of undefeated Penn State's most consistent performers this season, Raque has recorded 15 top three finishes while competing primarily in four events. He is currently ranked nationally No. 6 in the floor exercise, No. 7 in the vault, and No. 9 in the still rings.
Vazquez played an instrumental role in the Nittany Lions' upset of No. 2 Illinois, earning two top three finishes. He finished second in the pommel horse with a career-high score of 14.800, tying the nation's No. 1 ranked competitor in the event, Illinois' Daniel Ribeiro. Vazquez also placed third in the vault (15.800), helping the Nittany Lions secure a 1-2-3 finish and record a season-best team total of 63.400 in the event.
In his first competitive collegiate season, Vazquez has been a regular in the line-up for three events. He has won at least a share of two vault titles, earning the nation's No. 9 ranking.
The Nittany Lions are back in Happy Valley this weekend for their final home meet of the 2011 season, hosting No. 7 Ohio State on Sat., Feb. 26 in Rec Hall at 1 p.m. For senior Matt Albrecht (Guelph, Ont.) it will be his final home appearance in a Nittany Lion uniform. He will be honored in a special Senior Day ceremony following the meet. The conference clash will be aired by the Big Ten Network on a tape delay basis, with the airing of the competition set for Sat., March 5 at 3 p.m. The meet will also feature the No. 10 Nittany Lion women's gymnastics squad taking on the 17th-ranked Buckeyes.