Men's gymnastics advances to NCAA team finals

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Behind a trio of first-place performances, the No. 6 Penn State men's gymnastics team captured a third-place finish in the second session of the NCAA qualifier to advance to the team and all-around finals. The Nittany Lions' score of 433.100 placed third behind second place Ohio State (437.950) and first place Michigan (444.100).

PSU finished within the top three as a team in four of six events, including second-place finishes on the parallel bars (72.850) and high bar (72.050) and third-place finishes on the floor exercise (73.700) and vault (73.150).

Sophomore Trevor Howard (Columbus, Ohio) led the way with four top-10 finishes to complete the all-around with total score of 86.050, which slated him third overall. Howard, junior Craig Hernandez (Libertyville, Ill.) and junior Tristan Duverglas (West Orange, N.J.) all added first-place finishes.

Penn State opened competition with a solid showing on the floor exercise as Howard notched a third-place finish with a score of 15.350. Sophomore Alexis Torres (Catano, Puerto Rico) and Hernandez added two more top-10 performances, as Torres finished tied for seventh (15.000) and Hernandez finished tied for 10th (14.850).

Hernandez highlighted the pommel horse with a season-high score of 15.550 to capture a first-place finish, tying Nissen-Emery award winner Sam Mikulak's mark on the apparatus.

Looking to rebound from a team score of 69.850 on the pommel horse, Howard and Torres led the Nittany Lions to a 71.500 showing on the rings in the third rotation. Howard claimed swung to a first-place finish with a score of 15.200, while Torres notched a third-place finish with a 15.000.

Penn State continued its momentum into the fourth rotation as junior Tristan Duverglas (West Orange, N.J) vaulted to a top score of 15.250 to secure a first-place finish. Howard also placed within the top- 10, recording a 14.900 to position him 10th.

Heading into the sixth and final rotation, the Nittany Lions posted a trio of top 10 finishes on the high bar to close out the competition. Led by a 14.800 from Rodriguez, which slotted him tied for fourth, Felleman and Burbar finished with sixth and seventh place performances with scores of 14.750 and 14.650, respectively.

Next up, Penn State will compete for its 13th NCAA team title in program history in the team and all-around finals Friday, April 11. Competition begins at 7 p.m. in Crisler Arena. The meet will stream live via NCAA.com, while also broadcasting live on the Big Ten Network.   

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Last Updated April 11, 2014