Penn State Wrestlers In First Place After Session 1 of 2012 NCAA Wrestling Championships
March 15, 2012
ST. LOUIS, Mo. - The Penn State Nittany Lion wrestling team began its quest for a second straight NCAA title today in the first round of the 2012 NCAA Wrestling Championships in St. Louis. Penn State sits in first place after session one in the Scottrade Center. The Nittany Lions went 8-1 and rolled to 9.5 bonus points in the process.
Nittany Lion true freshman Nico Megaludis (Murrysville, Pa.), the No. 10 seed at 125, got Penn State off to a hot start with a 13-5 major over Wyoming's Michael Martinez, a fifth-year senior. Lion sophomore Frank Martellotti (Pittsburgh, Pa.) was pinned by No. 1 seed Jordan Oliver of Oklahoma State in his first match-up at 133 at the 2:06 mark.
Three-time All-American Frank Molinaro (Barnegat, N.J.), the No. 1 seed at 149, picked up a bonus point with a dominating 9-0 major over Cornell's Chris Villalonga. Molinaro racked up 4:27 in riding time. Red-shirt freshman Dylan Alton (Mill Hall, Pa.), the No. 7 seed at 157, continued Penn State's bonus point parade with an impressive 12-4 major over Columbia's Jake O'Hara in his NCAA debut.
All-American David Taylor (St. Paris, Ohio), the top seed at 165, made short work of his first match, pinning Bucknell's Corey Lear at the 1:40 mark. Taylor notched a quick takedown and then rolled the Bison to his shoulders for the fall. All-American Ed Ruth (Harrisburg, Pa.), the top seed at 174, matched Taylor's impressive effort, getting a quick pin over Rider's Jim Resnick as well. Ruth notched two takedowns in the first period, turning the second into a cradle and a pin at the 1:42 mark.
Defending National Champion Quentin Wright (Wingate, Pa.), the No. 6 seed at 184, rolled to an 11-0 major over North Carolina's Thomas Ferguson, using a late takedown and three near fall points to get the bonus point. True freshman Morgan McIntosh (Santa Ana, Calif.), unseeded at 197, made his NCAA debut in fine fashion, turning Oregon State's Taylor Meeks to his back twice in the third period and rolling to a 9-3 win. Senior Cameron Wade (Twinsburg, Ohio), the No. 6 seed at heavyweight, closed out Penn State's outstanding first day with a 17-2 technical fall over Clarion's Quintas McCorkle. Wade got a takedown with :04 left and picked up the riding time point for the 17-2 win.
All nine Nittany Lions will be in action tonight. Penn State's eight winners will see action in tonight's second round while Martellotti will begin the second session in the first round of consolations. The Nittany Lions rolled up an important 9.5 bonus points in going 8-1 on the day. Penn State had two pins, one tech fall and four majors.
The second sessions begins tonight, Thursday, at 6:30 p.m. CENTRAL/7:30 p.m. Eastern. The evening session is being broadcast live on ESPN3 and will feature the second round in the championship bracket as well as the first round of consolations. The three-day event runs March 15-17 in St. Louis' Scottrade Center.
The full season slate of live dual meet and tournament action will air locally on WRSC AM (1390 AM) with Friday evening duals being simulcast on WRSC FM (103.1 FM). Lock Haven's WBPZ (1230 AM) will also carry the entire season live, WIEZ (670 AM) in Huntingdon/Lewistown carries all Sunday events. The regular season schedule of radio broadcasts will be streamed live at www.GoPSUsports.com as part of Penn State's All-Access package. Fans are encouraged to follow Penn State wrestling via twitter at www.twitter.com/pennstatepat and on Penn State Wrestling's facebook page at www.facebook.com/pennstatewrestling. The 2011-12 Penn State Wrestling season is presented by The Family Clothesline.
149: Frank Molinaro (Barnegat, N.J.), Sr. - #1 seed - 29-0 overall
Top seed Frank Molinaro began his quest for an NCAA title and his fourth All-America honor with a dominating 9-0 major over Cornell's Chris Villalonga at 149. Molinaro recorded three takedowns, an escape, a stall point and a riding time point off 4:07 in time to coast to the win.
157: Dylan Alton (Mill Hall, Pa.), Fr. - #7 seed - 25-5 overall
Red-shirt freshman Dylan Alton made his NCAA Championship debut in fine fashion with a dominating 12-4 major over Columbia's Jake O'Hara. Alton rolled up 3:01 in riding time for the important team bonus point.
165: David Taylor (St. Paris, Ohio), So. - #1 seed - 28-0 overall
184: Quentin Wright (Wingate, Pa.), Jr. - #6 seed - 27-3 overall
Defending National Champion Quentin Wright began the defense of his NCAA title with a resounding 11-0 major decision over North Carolina's Thomas Ferguson. Wright used a late takedown and three near fall points to collect the bonus point.
197: Morgan McIntosh (Santa Ana, Calif.), Fr. - unseeded - 18-8 overall
285: Cameron Wade (Twinsburg, Ohio.), Sr. - #6 seed - 27-4 overall