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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- No. 1 Penn State (1-0, 0-0 B1G) opened up the 2017-18 season with a resounding 45-3 win over visiting Army West Point (0-1) in Rec Hall. Over 6,300 fans packed Rec Hall for the dual, Penn State's 36th straight Rec Hall sellout, as the Lions posted five pins in the victory.
The dual began at 125 where Nittany Lion redshirt freshman Devin Schnupp (Lititz, Pa.) made his collegiate debut. Schnupp dropped a hard fought 6-4 decision to Army's Trey Chalifoux. Senior Corey Keener (Schuylkill Haven, Pa.), ranked No. 15 at 133, made his Penn State debut after transferring from Central Michigan in dazzling fashion. The graduate student pinned Army's Lane Peters at the 2:50 mark to put the Lions on top 6-3. Junior Jered Cortez (Carol Stream, Ill.) followed that up at 141 with a strong 12-6 decision over Austin Harry.
Senior Zain Retherford (Benton, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 149, put on an offensive clinic in his senior season starter. The reigning NCAA champion rolled up a 14-1 first period lead before posting a lop-sided 17-1 tech fall at the 4:13 mark. Junior Jason Nolf (Yatesboro, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 157, sent Penn State into intermission with a 20-6 lead with a pin. Nolf turned an early first period scramble into four near fall points by working Lucas Weiland's shoulders to the mat with his legs. He finished off the scrambling pin at the 1:07 mark to send the Lions into the break with the big lead.
Sophomore Vincenzo Joseph (Pittsburgh, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 165, kept the Lions rolling with a 17-7 major decision over Army's Andrew Mendel. Sophomore Mark Hall (Apple Valley, Minn.), ranked No. 2 at 174, was dominant, picking up a second period pin after rolling to a big first period lead. Hall pinned No. 19 Ben Harvey at the 4:09 mark to put the Lions up 30-3. Junior Bo Nickal (Allen, Texas), ranked No. 1 at 184, finished off a `if you blink you missed it' performance by pinning Army's Noah Stewart in just :26 to give the Nittany Lions a 36-3 lead.
Sophomore Anthony Cassar (Rocky Hill, N.J.) made his Penn State dual meet debut at 197 and was strong in his first Rec Hall dual. Cassar picked up four takedowns on his way to a 10-3 victory over Rocco Caywood. Junior Nick Nevills (Clovis, Calif.), ranked No. 3 at 285, closed out the dual meet with Penn State's fifth pin. Nevills owned a big lead in the third before turning Army's Bobby Heald for a fall at the 6:10 mark to give Penn State the 45-3 victory.
The Nittany Lions reeled off nine straight wins after a close loss in the dual's first bout. Penn State picked up 18 bonus points off five pins, a major and a tech fall. The Nittany Lions posted a 34-4 takedown edge.
Penn State is now 1-0 overall, 0-0 in the Big Ten. Army falls to 0-1. The dual was wrestled in front of a sellout crowd of 6,320. The Nittany Lions have wrestled in front of 36 straight Rec Hall sellouts and 39 of 41 overall (including three of five in the Bryce Jordan Center.
The Nittany Lions will host Bucknell on Sunday at 2 p.m. in Rec Hall. Penn State continues action next weekend with a dual meet at Binghamton on Friday, Nov. 17, at 7 p.m. The Nittany Lions then trek to Philadelphia for the Keystone Classic on Sunday, Nov. 19, at Penn. With all home dual meets sold out, a limited number of Standing Room Only (SRO) tickets are available to select Rec Hall duals based on availability. Call 1-800-NITTANY for information or to purchase tickets.
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 45, Army West Point 3
November 9, 2017 -- Rec Hall -- University Park, Pa.
125: Trey Chalifoux AWP dec. Devin Schnupp PSU, 6-4 / 0-3
133: #15 Corey Keener PSU pinned Lane Peters AWP, WBF (2:50) / 6-3
141: Jered Cortez PSU dec. Austin Harry AWP, 12-6 / 9-3
149: #1 Zain Retherford PSU tech fall Knox Fuller AWP, 17-1 (TF; 4:13) / 14-3
157: #1 Jason Nolf PSU pinned Lucas Weiland AWP, WBF (1:53) / 20-3
165: #1 Vincenzo Joseph PSU maj. dec. Andrew Mendel AWP, 17-7 / 24-3
174: #2 Mark Hall PSU pinned #19 Ben Harvey AWP, WBF (4:09) / 30-3
184: #1 Bo Nickal PSU pinned Noah Stewart AWP, WBF (0:26) / 36-3
197: Anthony Cassar PSU dec. Rocco Caywood AWP, 10-3 / 39-3
285: #3 Nick Nevills, PSU pinned Bobby Heald AWP, WBF (6:10) / 45-3
Attendance: 6,320 (36th straight Rec Hall sell-out; 39th of 41 including 3 of 5 in BJC)
Records: Penn State 1-0, Army 0-1
Up Next for Penn State: hosts Bucknell, Sunday, Nov. 12, 2 p.m.
125: Redshirt freshman Devin Schnupp (Lititz, Pa.) made his Penn State dual debut in front of a sold out Rec Hall crowd against Army sophomore Trey Chalifoux. Schnupp fought off an early Chalifoux shot to keep the bout scoreless at the 2:00 mark. Schnupp gave up an early stall, then got in deep on a single leg but a stalemate was called at the 1:20 mark. Chalifoux took a 2-1 lead with a quick shot and takedown at the :40 mark and the bout moved into the second period with Schnupp trailing 2-1. Schnupp chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 2-2 tie. Schnupp got in on another high single but Chalifoux forced a scramble on the Lion logo that ended in a stalemate at the 1:20 mark. Chalifoux added a second takedown with :55 on the clock and then built up a 1:08 riding time edge with a rideout, leading 4-2 after two. Chalifoux chose down to start the third period and quickly escaped to a 5-2 lead. Schnupp notched his first takedown and cut Chalifoux loose with :25 left to cut the lead to 6-4. The Lion worked for a final takedown but Chalifoux was able to hold him off to post the 6-4 win.
133: Senior Corey Keener (Schuylkill Haven, Pa.), ranked No. 15 at 133, made his Nittany Lion debut after transferring from Central Michigan, against Army West Point's Lane Peters. After working the middle of the mat for half the period, Keener moved in for the win, catching Peters with a throw and sending him to the mat. Keener worked the hold for nearly :30 before getting the fall at the 2:50 mark, capping off a stellar Lion debut with the pin.
141: Junior Jered Cortez (Carol Stream, Ill.) took on AWP's Austin Harry at 141. Cortez was the aggressor throughout the first period, working his offense and forcing Harry to the edge of the mat. The Lion junior broke through for a takedown at the 2:00 mark to take an early 2-0 lead. Cortez then built up over :50 in riding time before Harry escaped to a 2-1 score at the 1:05 mark. Leading 2-1, Cortez chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 3-1 lead. At the 1:10 mark and finished off the takedown to lead 5-1 with :58 on the clock. Harry escaped to a 5-2 score and Cortez went back to work in the center of the mat. Trailing 5-2, Harry chose down to start the third period and escaped to a 5-3 score. Cortez worked his way behind Harry and notched his third takedown to lead 7-4. He quickly cut Harry loose and took him down at the 1:06 mark to up his lead to 9-4 with 1:16 in riding time. Cortez cut Harry loose with :47 left and began working for bonus points. He blew through a high double with :36 on the clock to lead 11-5 with :36 on the clock. Cortez cut Harry loose once more but Harry fought off Cortez's offense and the Lion junior posted the 12-6 decision with 1:46 in riding time.
149: Senior Zain Retherford (Benton, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 149, battled Knox Fuller. Retherford quickly took Fuller down to lead 2-0 early. He cut the Knight loose and immediately took him down again to lead 4-1. Retherford then worked top control into over 1:00 in riding time before turning him for four near fall points and an 8-1 lead. He turned Fuller again with :55 on the clock, picked up the four count to lead 12-1 with :30 left before a stalemate forced a reset in the middle of the mat. Retherford added a two point nearfall and led 14-1 after one period. Retherford chose down to start the second period. He escaped to a 15-1 lead with 1:30 on the clock and then ended the match with a takedown to post the 17-1 technical fall at the 4:13 mark.
157: Junior Jason Nolf (Yatesboro, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 157, faced off against Army's Lucas Weiland. Nolf quickly took Weiland down and two his back for a takedown and two near fall points. He then notched a second takedown, catching Weiland's shoulders between his legs for a four point nearfall. Nolf's move continued and the Lion finished off the dazzling pin at the 1:53 mark.
165: Sophomore Vincenzo Joseph (Pittsburgh, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 165, took on Black Knight Andrew Mendel. Mendel took Joseph down for an early 2-0 lead before the Lion escaped to a 2-1 score at the 2:00 mark. Joseph took the lead with a fast takedown shortly after his escape and then cut the Army senior loose to a 3-3 tie. Joseph fought off a quick Mendel shot, countered with a low single and finished off the takedown at the edge of the mat to lead 5-3 with :30 left. Joseph rode Mendel out to lead 5-3 after the opening period. Joseph chose down to start the second stanza and quickly escaped to a 6-3 lead. He then worked his way behind Mendel and added another takedown to lead 8-3. Mendel escaped but Joseph continued to pour on the offense, adding a takedown and rideout with :15 left to lead 10-4 with :59 in time after two periods. Mendel chose down to start the third period and Joseph cut him loose to a 10-5 score. He added two more takedowns and cemented his riding time edge. Joseph added a third takedown with :10 on the clock and rolled to a 17-7 major with 2:00 in riding time.
174: Sophomore Mark Hall (Apple Valley, Minn.), ranked No. 2 at 174, faced off against No. 19 Ben Harvey in the dual's marquee match-up. Hall notched the first takedown early in the first period and then put together a strong ride. The Lion sophomore controlled the ranked Knight for :49 before cutting him loose to a 2-1 lead. Hall scrambled his way to a takedown on the edge of the mat, upping his lead to 4-1 with 1:26 on the clock. Hall controlled the action from the top, working his riding time up over 1:00 before Harvey escaped to a 4-2 score. Hall used a high single to pick up his third takedown and, with a rideout, led 6-2 with 1:54 in time after one period. Hall chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 7-2 lead. He countered a slight Harvey shot and picked up another takedown to lead 9-3 after cutting the Knight loose on the reset. Hall worked himself into control of Harvey's shoulders, turned the Knight to his back for the fall at the 4:09 mark.
184: Junior Bo Nickal (Allen, Texas), ranked No. 1 at 184, met sophomore Noah Stewart. Nickal wasted no time in ending the match. He gained control of Stewart's shoulders from the standing position and quickly tossed him to his back for a fast fall at the 0:26 mark.
197: Sophomore Anthony Cassar (Rocky Hill, N.J.) made his Penn State debut at 197, facing off against Army junior Rocco Caywood. Cassar controlled the action for the bulk of the first period and his offense paid off with a takedown at the :30 mark. Caywood escaped to a 2-1 score as the first period ended. Cassar chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 3-1 lead. The duo battled evenly for the next minute before Cassar countered a Caywood shot for his second takedown. He finished off a short rideout and led 5-1 after two periods. Caywood chose down to start the final period and escaped to a 5-2 score. Cassar worked a high single into a scramble and another takedown to lead 7-2 with :55 on the clock. He built his riding time up over 1:00 and then cut Caywood loose with :20 on the clock. He picked up a final takedown as the period ended and, with 1:22 in riding time, posted a strong 10-3 decision over Caywood.
285: Junior Nick Nevills (Clovis, Calif.), ranked No. 3 at 285, met freshman Bobby Heald. Nevills scored early, taking Heald down just over :30 into the bout to lead 2-0. He built up nearly 1:00 in time before cutting Heald loose to a 2-1 score. The Lion All-American tacked on a second takedown with :55 left in the period and worked action from the top position until cutting the Knight loose at the :30 mark. Nevills quickly added a third takedown and led 6-2 with 1:44 in time after one period. Nevills chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 7-2 lead. He tacked on one more takedown and then slipped on another attempt, allowing Heald to notch a takedown to cut the lead to 9-5. Nevills quickly reversed Heald and led 11-6 with 1:27 in time as the second period wound down. Trailing 11-6, Heald chose down to start the third period and escaped to an 11-7 score. Nevills picked up another takedown to lead 13-8 after cutting Heald loose with 1:01 left in the match. He turned a low single into a cradle and finished off the dual with a pin at the 6:10 mark.