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April 14, 2008
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State assistant coach and Olympic hopeful Kevin Tan added another achievement to his already impressive and lengthy international resume this weekend by winning a silver medal in the still rings at the 32nd Turnier der Meister at the Lausitz-Arena in Cottbus, Germany. The annual prestigious event featured a collection of the world's elite competitors from 40 countries.
Tan, who was the only member of Team USA to advance to the finals in any event, claimed second place with a score of 16.075. He finished behind only the Netherlands' Yuri Van Gelder, who won the event with a score of 16.625. Tan also advanced to the finals in the parallel bars, placing eighth.
His standout showing at the Turnier der Meister comes on the heels of two impressive performances earlier this year. In February, Tan captured his third consecutive and fourth overall rings championship at the Winter Cup Challenge, a prestigious USA Gymnastics event held annually in Las Vegas. Later that month, he led a select group of gymnasts from the U.S. Men's Senior National Team to a 361.350-352.600 dual meet victory over Canada in Calgary. With perhaps his best performance in his distinguished international career, Tan won the pommel horse (14.900), the still rings (16.300), and the parallel bars (15.500). He also placed third in the high bar (15.000).
Tan will now join the Nittany Lions in Stanford, Calif. as it pursues the program's 13th NCAA title at the 2008 National Collegiate Championships. Competition begins on Thurs., April 17 with two qualifying sessions, scheduled for 4 and 10 p.m. ET. Penn State, along with Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, and William & Mary, will compete in Session I while California, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Stanford, and Temple will comprise the Session II field.
The top three teams from each qualifier will then advance to contend for the national championship at 10 p.m. ET on Fri., April 18. The individual all-around champion will also be crowned that evening. The following night, on Sat., April 19, the individual event finals will be held at 7 p.m., with six national titles and All-American honors at stake.
In addition to his coaching duties, Tan will continue to train in preparation for the 2008 VISA Championships in Houston from May 22-24. A good showing at that competition will likely earn him an invitation to the 2008 U.S. Olympic Trials, to be held in Philadelphia from June 19-22.