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March 13, 2014
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The No. 7 Penn State men's gymnastics team will travel to No. 3 Michigan this weekend for its final regular season dual meet. The Nittany Lions will square off against the Wolverines in their last Big Ten battle of the year Friday, March 14 at 3:30 p.m. in Cliff Keen Arena.
The matchup will broadcast live on the Big Ten Network with Mike Wolf and John Roethlisberger on the call.
Penn State enters the last weekend of competition before the Big Ten Championship ranked within the top 10 nationally on every apparatus. Sophomore Alexis Torres (Catano, Puerto Rico) is leading the way, ranked within the top 10 on the rings and in the floor exercise.
Last weekend, Torres highlighted the Puerto Rico Challenge with a first-place finish on the rings, swinging to a season-high score of 15.650. With the performance, Torres moved up two spots to seventh in the national standings on the rings. Torres also turned in a third-place finish in the floor exercise at the Puerto Rico Challenge with a score of 15.200 to slate him sixth in the nation on the floor this week.
Senior Wasef Burbar (Arlington Heights, Ill.) also contributed and individual title to the Nittany Lions' team score of 428.550, which placed PSU second overall. Burbar registered a season-high score of 14.750 to tie him for first on the high bar.
Sophomore Trevor Howard (Columbus, Ohio) and junior Tristan Duverglas (West Orange, N.J.) are both positioned within the top five in one event each. Howard is ranked fifth on the rings, (15.500), while Duverglas is tied for second on the vault (15.133) following a few weeks away from competition.
As a team, the Nittany Lions are ranked highest in the floor exercise, averaging an overall score of 73.317, which is good for fourth in the nation. Following a season-high score from Nestor Rodriguez (Gyaynabo, Puerto Rico) on the parallel bars last weekend, (15.300), Penn State moved to sixth nationally in the event. PSU is also ranked sixth on the rings (73.517).
Penn State recently faced Michigan at the Puerto Rico Challenge, falling just short of the Wolverines' top team score of 438.800. U-M's Stacey Ervin led the way with an individual title in the floor exercise, posting a score of 16.100 to claim this week's Big Ten Gymnast of the Week honor.
Following the meet against Michigan, the Nittany Lions will return home to train for the Big Ten Championship, which begins Friday, March 28 and concludes Saturday, March 29 in Lincoln, Neb.