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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- The Penn State Nittany Lions (14-0, 9-0 B1G) closed out their third straight unbeaten dual meet season by pinning a 55-0 shutout on Buffalo in sold out Rec Hall. The Nittany Lions win over the Bulls allows head coach Cael Sanderson's team to end the campaign with a 14-0 overall. Penn State already won the 2018 Big Ten Regular Season (Dual Meet) title with a 9-0 mark. Buffalo falls to 5-12.
Three seniors got the call in their final dual collegiate dual meets, led by Zain Retherford (Benton, Pa.) at 149. The Nittany Lions have now won 45 straight dual meets dating back to the end of the 2014-15 campaign. Penn State dropped a 21-18 dual at Oklahoma State on Feb. 15, 2015 and closed out the year with a win over Rider. The Nittany Lions went 16-0 in 2015-16, 14-0 in 2016-17 and 14-0 this year. While this was a non-conference win, Penn State will head into next year with a 25-dual win streak in Big Ten action as well. The sell-out crowd of 6,431 was the 41st straight sell-out in Rec Hall, giving the Nittany Lions 45 sellouts in its last 47 home duals (41 straight in Rec Hall and four of six in the near-16,000 seat Bryce Jordan Center).
The dual began at 125 where senior graduate transfer Carson Kuhn (Sandy, Utah) was set to close out his collegiate dual career in front of a rowdy Rec Hall crowd. Kuhn, who transferred from Boise State in January, received a forfeit victory as Buffalo did not weigh in a competitor. Senior Corey Keener (Schuylkill Haven, Pa.) wrestled in the final dual of his collegiate career at 133. The transfer from Central Michigan dominated Justin Patrick, rolling to an 8-3 victory with 1:52 in riding time to put Penn State up 9-0 early.
True freshman Nick Lee (Evansville, Ind.), ranked No. 8 at 141, dominated Nicholas Cassella before picking up the fall at the 4:37 mark. Lee's pin set up Retherford's career dual finale at 149. Retherford, ranked No. 1 nationally, said goodbye to Rec Hall with his 52nd career pin. The Lion said goodbye to the Rec Hall faithful with a pin over Nick Palumbo at the 4:10 mark. The win improves the Lion senior to 23-0 on the year. With No. 1 Jason Nolf (Yatesboro, Pa.) out one more time at 157, redshirt freshman Bo Pipher (Paonia, Colo.) stepped in and picked up his first dual win as a Nittany Lion by pinning Eric Fasnacht at the 1:53 mark. Penn State led 27-0 at intermission.
Sophomore Vincenzo Joseph (Pittsburgh, Pa.), ranked No. 3 at 165, posted a strong and workmanlike 16-8 major over Noah Grover to open up the second half, putting the Lions up 31-0. Sophomore Mark Hall (Apple Valley, Minn.), ranked No. 2 at 174, then notched PSU's fourth pin of the dual, picking up the fast fall of Derek Holcomb at the 0:56 mark. Junior Bo Nickal (Allen, Texas), ranked No. 1 at 184, notched his eighth fast fall in under 1:00, taking down and sticking Brett Perry in just 0:11. The fall is tied for second all-time at Penn State for fastest pin (David Taylor in 2014). Dylan Alton holds the record with a pin at the 0:08 mark in 2013.
Junior Shakur Rasheed (Coram, N.Y.), ranked No. 5 at 197, kept Penn State's pin parade going by getting the fall over Buffalo senior Joe Ariola at the 1:57 mark to put the Nittany Lions up 49-0. Junior Nick Nevills (Clovis, Calif.), ranked No. 4 at 285, took on Buffalo's Nolan Terrance in the final bout of the dual. The Lion junior took Terrance down twice early and, on the second one, took the Bull down to his back, reset himself briefly and picked up Penn State's seventh pin of the dual at the 2:48 mark. Nevills' fall secured a 55-0 shutout win, clinched a new PSU record for points in a dual meet (55) and tied the all-time record for pins in a dual (7). The points and pins records were both set on Jan. 25, 1983, when the Lions used seven pins to beat Millersville 54-0.
The shutout was Penn State's first of the year and the Lions picked up 25 bonus points off seven pins (Lee, Retherford, Pipher, Hall, Nickal, Rasheed, Nevills), a forfeit (Kuhn) and a major (Joseph). The Nittany Lions posted a gaudy 24-1 takedown advantage in the dual. Retherford now has 118 career wins, 13th all-time at Penn State. He has 52 career pins (16 this year), third all-time and just one shy of the Penn State record of 53 held by David Taylor and Josh Moore. While Nolf stays at fifth all-time with 44 career pins, Nickal has 14 this year and 39 for his career, sixth all-time. Rasheed has 12 this season and 20 for his career and Hall has 10 this year and 22 for his career, both just out of the top 20 all-time in Penn State history.
A total of nine individuals were honored as part of Senior Day. In addition to Kuhn, Keener and Retherford, Lions Jered Cortez, Matt McCutcheon, Devon Van Cura, Ethan Wissler, Kenny Yanovich as well as affiliate club member Shannon Dougherty were recognized.
Penn State will now prep for the 2018 Big Ten Championships on March 3-4 in East Lansing, Mich. The NCAA qualifier for the conference, the two day event will take place in Michigan State's Breslin Center and begins on Saturday, March 3 at 10 a.m.
The 2017-18 Penn State wrestling season is sponsored by The Family Clothesline. Penn State Fans are encouraged to follow Penn State wrestling via twitter at @pennstateWREST, on Penn State Wrestling's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/pennstatewrestling and on Instagram at www.instagram.com/pennstatewrest. This is PENN STATE. WRESTLING lives here.
#1 Penn State 55, Buffalo 0
February 18, 2018 -- Rec Hall -- University Park, Pa.
125: Carson Kuhn PSU win by forfeit / 6-0
133: Corey Keener PSU dec. Justin Patrick UB, 8-3 / 9-0
141: #8 Nick Lee PSU pinned Nicholas Cassella UB, WBF (4:37) / 15-0
149: #1 Zain Retherford PSU pinned Nicholas Palumbo UB, WBF (4:10) / 21-0
157: Bo Pipher PSU pinned Eric Fasnacht UB, WBF (1:53) / 27-0
165: #3 Vincenzo Joseph PSU maj. dec. Noah Grover UB, 16-8 / 31-0
174: #2 Mark Hall PSU pinned Derek Holcomb UB, WBF (0:56) / 37-0
184: #1 Bo Nickal PSU pinned Brett Perry UB, WBF (0:11) / 43-0
197: #5 Shakur Rasheed PSU pinned Joe Ariola UB, WBF (1:57) / 49-0
285: #4 Nick Nevills PSU pinned Nolan Terrance UB, WBF (2:48) / 55-0
Attendance: 6,431 (41st straight Rec Hall sellout, 45th of 47 overall including 4 of 6 in BJC)
Records: Penn State 14-0, 9-0 B1G; Buffalo 5-12
Up Next for Penn State: 2018 Big Ten Championships, March 3-4, East Lansing, Mich.
125: Senior Carson Kuhn (Sandy, Utah), wrestling in his final collegiate dual meet at 125, received a forfeit victory when Buffalo did not weigh in a competitor.
133: Senior Corey Keener (Schuylkill Haven, Pa.), wrestling in his final collegiate dual meet at 133, met Justin Patrick. The duo battled evenly for the first minute before Keener worked his way around behind Patrick for a takedown. The Buffalo bench immediately challenged the takedown, looking for an official review. The call stood and Keener led 2-1 early. Keener kept up the offensive pressure, forcing Patrick back on his heels for the rest of the opening period and led by one after one. The Lion senior chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 3-1 lead. He then scrambled through a high double for another takedown and a 5-1 lead just seconds into the second period. Patrick escaped to a 5-2 score with 1:30 on the clock and Keener continued to pressure the Bull for the rest of the period. Patrick's defense kept Keener from scoring but the Nittany Lion led 5-2 after two. Patrick chose down to start the third period and escaped to a 5-3 Keener lead at the 1:30 mark. The Lion ducked under Patrick for a nifty takedown on the edge of the mat and led 7-3 with over 1:00 riding time with :52 left in the bout. Keener nearly rolled Patrick for two back points but he didn't get the call at the :30 mark. Keener finished on top and, with 1:52 in riding time, posted the strong 8-3 win.
141: True freshman Nick Lee (Evansville, Ind.), ranked No. 8 at 141, took on Nick Cassella. Lee used a high single to work his way to an early takedown just :20 into the bout. Lee cut Cassella loose and then quickly scored again to lead 4-1 at the 2:10 mark. The Lion freshman cut the Bull loose once again and ducked under Cassella for a third takedown and a 6-2 lead with 1:32 on the clock. Lee built up over 1:30 in riding time before cutting him loose again and then notched a fourth takedown just a second later to lead 8-3. Lee forced Cassella into a stall warning and then rolled the Bull over for four back points as the period ended to lead 12-3 after one. Cassella chose down to start the second period and escaped to a 12-4 score. Lee rolled through a low double for a takedown and a 14-4 lead with 1:40 on the clock. He worked Cassella's shoulders over to the mat, readjusted himself once, then a second time, a third time and got the pin at the 4:37 mark.
149: Senior Zain Retherford (Benton, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 149, competed for one final time in front of a Rec Hall dual meet crowd against Buffalo's Nick Palumbo. Retherford used a high double for a quick takedown at the 2:46 mark to open up a 2-1 lead. The Lion senior pulled Palumbo down by his arm for a second takedown with 1:50 on the clock, cut him loose to a 4-2 score, and then notched a third takedown off a high double with 1:30 left in the opening period. Retherford then turned Palumbo to his back, steadied himself on top, and picked up four near fall points to lead 10-3 at the 1:00 mark. Retherford notched a fourth takedown at the :30 mark and led 12-3 after the opening period. Palumbo chose neutral to start the second period and Retherford quickly took him down for a 14-3 lead. He then rolled Palumbo for two back points, readjusted and turned him one more time. The Lion senior, in his final dual in Rec Hall, picked up the pin at the 4:10 mark.
157: With No. 1 Jason Nolf (Yatesboro, Pa.) held out one more time at 157, red-shirt freshman Bo Pipher (Paonia, Colo.) took on Bull Eric Fasnacht. Pipher picked up the bout's first takedown, using a high single to open up a 2-0 lead at the 1:55 mark. The Lion freshman then locked up a quick cradle, turned Fasnacht to his back and picked up his first dual win as a Lion with the pin at the 1:53 mark.
165: Sophomore Vincenzo Joseph (Pittsburgh, Pa.), ranked No. 3 at 165, met Noah Grover. Joseph scored just three seconds into the bout, taking a 2-1 lead after cutting Grover loose. He countered a slight Grover shot, reset action on the Nittany Lion log and then rolled through a double leg for a 4-1 lead with 2:10 on the clock. Joseph then built up nearly 1:00 in riding time, turned Grover for four back points and cut the Bull loose to an 8-2 lead. Another high double gave Joseph a 10-3 lead at the 1:00 mark. Joseph tried to toss Grover, but the Bull countered for a takedown and two back points to cut Joseph's lead to 10-7 after one period. The Lion chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to an 11-7 lead. Joseph battled in the middle of the mat, fighting off a takedown attempt at the :30 mark, then taking the Bull down with :15 left to lead 13-7 after two periods. Grover chose down to start the third period and Joseph cut him loose to a 13-8 score. With 1:00 in riding time in his pocket, the Lion sophomore turned a low single into a takedown and a 15-8 lead at the 1:10 mark. Joseph clinched the riding time point and then broke Grover down to finish off the rideout and post a strong 16-8 major with 2:14 in riding time.
174: Sophomore Mark Hall (Apple Valley, Minn.), ranked No. 2 at 174, battled Derek Holcomb. Hall looked to score early, fought off a Holcomb counter, and then locked up Holcomb's shoulders and head, tossed him to the mat and, after a bit of work, picked up Penn State's fourth pin of the dual at the :56 mark.
184: Junior Bo Nickal (Allen, Texas), ranked No. 1 at 184, met Buffalo junior Brett Perry. Nickal wasted no time posting Penn State's fastest pin of the year. He took Perry down off the opening whistle, turned the Bull to his back and picked up the pin just 0:11 into the bout.
197: Junior Shakur Rasheed (Coram, N.Y.), ranked No. 5 at 197, faced off against senior Joe Ariola. Rasheed quickly took Ariola down, worked his way into control of a cradle and picked up two near fall points to lead 4-0 in the opening :40. After a reset at the 1:54 mark, Rasheed worked top control into another near turn attempt but the Buffalo senior was able to fight off the back points. Rasheed then adjusted, quickly locked up another cradle and this time got the fall at the 1:57 mark.
285: Junior Nick Nevills (Clovis, Calif.), ranked No. 4 at 285, met Nolan Terrance. Nevills used a high single to open up an early 2-0 lead over Terrance. The Lion junior used a strong ride to build up some riding time and then turned the Bull for a four-count to lead 6-0 at the 1:45 mark. Nevills forced Terrance into a stall warning at the 1:10 mark and then cut the Bull loose to a 6-1 score. Nevills used another high single to take Terrance down and to his back. He then settled in for the pin, getting the fall at the 2:48 mark.