LION¡¯S TAN CAPTURES BACK-TO-BACK NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP ON RINGS: RANDY JEPSON EARNS NATIONAL COACH OF THE YEAR
CHAMPAIGN, Ill.; April 4, 2004- Just a day after the Lions took home the NCAA team championship, Penn State senior Kevin Tan (Fremont, Calif.) stood atop the podium again, this time as the 2004 NCAA rings champion. The title was Tan¡¯s second consecutive crown, becoming Penn State¡¯s first back-to-back national champion on the rings and capping off an outstanding collegiate career on the apparatus.
The honors continued to roll in for the newly-crowned national champion Lions, with Penn State¡¯s head coach Randy Jepson earning his second national coach of the year nod after leading the Lions to their second NCAA title in five years and an NCAA record 11th overall. The Nittany Lions won the team title Saturday night with a season-high 223.350.
The 2004 NCAA all-around champion, sophomore Luis Vargas (Rio Pedros, P.R.) had an outstanding day, earning All-American honors four times over. Vargas started with a solid routine on pommel horse, earning the fourth All-American honor of his young career with a 9.687 runner-up performance. Junior Nat Eng (Cohoes, N.Y.), who will graduate this spring in just three years from the University, placed eighth on the pommel horse with an 8.775. Senior Zach Roeder (Montrose, Pa.) came in 10th with a 9.300.
On the parallel bars, Vargas just missed out on another top three finish, placing fourth with a 9.025 and earning All-American honors for the second time during the individual event finals. Tan finished ninth on the apparatus with an 8.450.
Vargas finished his outstanding championship performance with a tie for sixth place on the high bar, earning his fourth All-American honor of the weekend with a 9.475. Vargas was one of only three competitors to earn four or more All-American honors after capturing the all-around yesterday.
Tan¡¯s title on rings and Vargas¡¯ titles in the all-around builds on Penn State¡¯s NCAA-record total, giving the Lions 48 individual titles in program history. Penn State also holds the record for team titles with 11, including the 2004 title the Lions captured yesterday.
INDIVIDUAL EVENT FINAL RESULTS ALL-AROUND (CONTESTED WITH TEAM FINALS SATURDAY) 1. Luis Vargas, Penn State 56.475 2. Dan Gill, Stanford 56.125 3. Randy Monahan, Ohio State 55.725 STILL RINGS 1. Kevin Tan, Penn State 9.812 2. Nyika White, Temple 9.787 3. David Henderson, Oklahoma 9.600 POMMEL HORSE 1. Robert Rogers, Illinois 9.775 2T. Luis Vargas, Penn State 9.687 2T. Dan Gill, Stanford 9.687 PARALLEL BARS 1. Ramon Jackson, William & Mary 9.200 2. Linas Gaveika, Iowa 9.187 3. Joshua Gore, Oklahoma 9.100 4. Luis Vargas, Penn State 9.025 HIGH BAR 1. Justin Spring, Illinois 9.775 2T. Dan Gill, Stanford 9.737 2T. Graham Ackerman, California 9.737 4. Linas Gaveika, Iowa 9.687 5. Ronald Ferris, Ohio State 9.537 . Luis Vargas, Penn State 9.475 6T. Quinn Rowell, Oklahoma 9.475 OTHER NCAA CHAMPIONS Floor- Graham Ackerman, California 9.687 Vault- Graham Ackerman, California 9.687