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Penn State Wrestling Match Blog - FINAL #2 Penn State 34, #12 Michigan 7

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Take a look back at Penn State's 34-7 victory over No. 12 Michigan inside Rec Hall on Sunday afternoon.

Welcome to Rec Hall for a Big Ten showdown between the second-ranked Nittany Lions and 12th-ranked Michigan.

Penn State (10-1, 6-1) returns to action after a dominant 31-6 victory at No. 7 Nebraska on Friday night.  The Nittany Lions flew back to State College immediately after Friday's match, arriving home at 1:30 a.m.  Today, Penn State welcomes Michigan to sold out Rec Hall.  The Wolverines suffered a 24-14 setback to Ohio State on Friday.

If Penn State beats the Michigan, the Nittany Lions clinch either a share of the Big Ten regular season dual meet title or the title outright.  A Penn State victory and a Minnesota loss to Nebraska in its match at Minneapolis would give the Lions an outright regular season dual title.  Stay tuned for updates after every match this afternoon.

125: #9 Nico Megaludis Dominates Pizzo
Freshman Nico Megaludis has been very effective setting the tone strong performances to kick-off dual matches.  Sunday was no exception, as the ninth-ranked Nittany Lion kicked off his bout against Michigan's Grant Pizzo with five takedowns in the opening period.  Holding a 10-4 lead after one period, Megaludis added two more takedowns and an escape to make it 15-8 after two periods.  He ended the match with 10 takedowns.  With a 22-10 major decision, Megaludis put the Lions up 4-0 on the scoreboard.

133: #16 Zac Stevens Holds Off Frank Martellotti
In the second bout of the afternoon No. 16 Zac Stevens opened a 4-1 lead over Penn State sophomore Frank Martellotti after one period.  Stevens' lead grew to 6-2 following a reversal in the second period.  Marellotti tallied three escape points and a takedown to slice Stevens' lead down to 10-7 late in the third, but that would be as close as the Nittany Lion would get.  Stevens scored an 11-7 victory to set the match score at, 4-3, Penn State.

141: #1 Kellen Russell Defeats Bryan Pearsall
Defending national champion and No. 1-ranked Kellen Russell took control of his bout with Bryan Pearsall from the opening whistle forward.  Russell tallied two takedowns and three back points to build a 7-1 advantage at the end of the first period.  The Michigan standout senior finished the bout with four takedowns en route to a 12-2 victory.  Russell's major decision handed Michigan a 7-4 lead in the overall match.

149: #1 Frank Molinaro Battles Past #7 Eric Grajales
Undefeated and top-ranked Frank Molinaro wasted little time building an early lead against Michigan sophomore and No. 7-ranked Eric Grajales.  Molinaro scored two takedowns in the first period to go up, 4-1.  A quick escape in the second period was the only other tally during the match.  However, Molinaro dominated on top during the third period to build more than 3:00 of riding time on his way to a 6-1 decision.  Molinaro's 23rd victory of the season tied the overall score at 7-7 through four bouts.

157: #6 Dylan Alton Notches 5-4 Win Over Brandon Zeerip
Sixth-ranked Dylan Alton battled Michigan's Brandon Zeerip for all seven minutes of the 157-pound matchup.  Alton struck first with a takedown, but Zeerip took a 3-2 lead into the second period.  Nonetheless, Alton got back on the board with a takedown in the second period.  One escape from Zeerip tied things at 4-4 heading into the final 2:00.  Alton tallied an escape just into the third period, and from there, the redshirt freshman blocked shot after shot attempt from Zeerip on his way to a thrilling 5-4 victory.  Alton's triumph put the Lions up, 10-7, heading into the break.

165: #1 David Taylor Notches Tech Fall Against #14 Dan Yates
Top-ranked David Taylor marched to a dominant 5-0 lead in the first period of his match against No. 14 Dan Yates.  Taylor maneuvered in for a takedown along the edge of the mat before turning Yates for three back points.  Taylor worked for an escape to start the second period for a 6-0 lead.  Taylor notched a second takedown before notching four more back points to claim a 12-0 lead after the second period.  Taylor capped off a superb 15-0 tech fall victory with three more near-fall points in the third period (5:25).  Taylor is 21-0 on the season.  The tech fall put the Lions up 15-7 on the scoreboard.

174: #2 Ed Ruth Rolls Past #8 Justin Zeerip
Second-ranked Ed Ruth continued his string of outstanding performances for the Nittany Lions with a 12-1 major over No. 8 Justin Zeerip from Michigan.  Ruth built a 3-0 lead after one period thanks to a takedown and a stalling point.  The Lion sophomore added an escape point to make it 4-0 after two periods.  Zeerip got on the board with an escape to open the third, but Ruth came right back with a takedown to make it 6-1.  From there, Ruth began to wear down Zeerip.  He scored three near-fall points and finished with 3:50 of riding time to set the final score at 12-1.  Ruth's major decision set the overall score at 19-7.

184: #2 Quentin Wright Pins Hunter Collins
Like Ruth and Taylor before him, defending national champion Quentin Wright wrestled another dominant match against Michigan's Hunter Collins.  The Nittany Lion junior scored two takedowns and three near-fall points to set the score at 7-1 after the first period.  Wright exploded into a move that quickly sent Collins to his back, ending the match in a pin for the fifth time in seven matches for Wright.  The second-ranked Wright's pin set the overall score at 25-7.

197: Matt Brown Fights Past #15 Max Huntley
Nittany Lion redshirt freshman Matt Brown took the mat for the second-straight dual match at 197 pounds against No. 15 Max Huntley.  Brown, in the lineup for Morgan McIntosh (knee) normally wrestles at 174 pounds.  This weekend, however, the Lion rookie has done a superb job at 197 pounds.  He scored a 2-1 win on Friday at Nebraska.  On Sunday, Brown fell behind 1-0 after two periods, but he battled for an escape to open the third to square the match at 1-1.  Brown and Huntley were neutral for most of the third period before Brown mustered a double-leg takedown on the edge of the mat in the final seconds to tally a dramatic 3-1 decision.  Brown's victory set the overall match score at 28-7 heading into the final bout.

285: #6 Cameron Wade Pins #10 Ben Apland
Sixth-ranked Cameron Wade capped off another dominant outing inside Rec Hall with a pin against No. 10 Ben Apland from Michigan.  Wade built an 8-0 lead after one period on the heels of a takedown and six near-fall points.  Wade tallied the pinfall victory at the 3:58 mark to set the final score at 34-7.

Final Thoughts
Penn State celebrated a share of the Big Ten regular season dual meet title with a dominant performance on Sunday afternoon in front of another sold out crowd in Rec Hall.  The Nittany Lions scored two pins, a tech fall and one major en route to eight victories on the afternoon.  It is repeated every week, but Taylor, Ruth and Wright are wrestling at an incredibly high level as the Lions begin to close in on the month of March.  Coach Sanderson talks repeatedly about attitude, and Penn State is competing at a level necessary to battle for a national title.

All eight Nittany Lions who scored victories wrestled well on Sunday, but Brown's effort against the 15th-ranked wrestler at 197 pounds stole the show on Sunday.  Brown was visibly 20 pounds or more lighter than Huntley while wrestling two weight classes higher than he had all year prior to Friday's win at Nebraska.  Penn State travels to Utah Valley on Saturday before hosting Pittsburgh on Feb. 19 to cap off the dual match season.

Follow Media Specialist Tony Mancuso on Twitter @GoPSUTony

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