Pair of Gymnasts Conclude Navy’s Season at NCAA Championship
WEST POINT, N.Y. – The 2017 season for the Navy gymnastics program drew to a close on Saturday night as Jonny Tang (Sr., Malvern, Pa.) and Lucas Beltran (Fr., Corpus Christi, Texas) represented the Mids at the finals of the NCAA Championships. Hosted at Army West Point in the Holleder Center, Tang competed for Navy in the all-around event, while Beltran tested himself in the event finals of the floor exercise and vault.
In his final collegiate competition, Tang went toe-to-toe with the nation’s premier gymnasts in the all-around and finished tied for 11th overall with a six-event aggregate of 81.75 points. Amongst the athletes out-pointing Tang were three Oklahoma Sooners, three Ohio State Buckeyes and two Stanford Cardinal.
Tang’s Championship Finals night began with a stellar showing on the floor exercise with a score of 14.35 that ranked ninth overall, just 0.1 points out of fifth place. Next up, a 12.85-point result was his lowest score of the evening before he got back into the swing of things with a 13.9 on the rings to rank 22nd. Over the next two rotations, Tang was awarded a 13.55 for his vault and a 14.05 for his parallel bars routine. His p-bar score placed him 25th amongst the field. The four-year starter for Navy concluded his decorated career on the high bar and went out with a score of 13.05.
“Jonny was true champion for us all weekend long,” remarked head coach Kip Simons. “He showed tremendous leadership on the competition floor and led a very young team on the highest level of national gymnastics. Individually, he hit 12-of-12 routines over Friday and Saturday. That was a great performance!”
Just a freshman, Beltran showed well on the biggest stage of collegiate gymnasts as he tied for 22nd on the floor exercise with a 14.0-point effort. On the vault, he went for a boom-or-bust maneuver that he unfortunately sat the landing for a score of 13.45.
“Lucas performed very well on the floor as a plebe, though he came up a little short on the vault,” said Simons. “Meet-in meet-out he was one of the best vaulters in the country this season. We look forward to great things from him in the future.”
Saturday night’s competition marked the conclusion of the 2017 season for Navy.
“Overall, this weekend was a great step forward for the program and we’re already making plans to get even better,” concluded Simons. “Our foundation is very strong!”
In terms, of the team championship, Oklahoma defended its title with a 431.95 score. Ohio State finished runner-up with a score of 423.70 to edge Illinois’ 422.10. Stanford (421.5), Minnesota (414.2) and Nebraska (412.9) rounded out the field of six competitors.
In the all-around event, Stanford’s Akash Modi won with a total of 87.9 points as he out-scored Oklahoma’s Yul Moldauer (87.6) and Allan Bower (87.3).