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Feb. 15, 2012
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -
No. 2 Penn State (12-1, 7-1 B1G) will host No. 9 Pittsburgh (13-1) in its dual meet finale on Sunday, February 19. The match in an already sold out Rec Hall is set for 2 p.m. and will serve as Senior Day for the Nittany Lions.
Penn State heads into its final dual of the season coming off a 39-3 win at Utah Valley last Saturday in front of 5,470 fans, a Utah-state record for attendance at a collegiate dual meet. The Nittany Lions have reeled off 11 straight wins dating back to a loss to Minnesota in November.
The Nittany Lions are being led by a balanced line-up featuring eight ranked wrestlers all listed among the top 12 at their respective weights. Three-time All-American Frank Molinaro is undefeated with a 24-0 record and ranked No. 1 at 149. Molinaro is heading into the final home dual of a prestigious career as a Nittany Lion. Senior Cameron Wade is 21-4 and ranked No. 6 at heavyweight, an like Molinaro, is closing out an outstanding career with his final home dual. Wade is currently sixth all-time at Penn State with 30 pins. All-American David Taylor is undefeated with a 22-0 record and ranked No. 1 at 165 while fellow All-American Ed Ruth is undefeated at 23-0 and No. 2 at 174. Two-time All-American Quentin Wright is 21-2 at 184 and ranked No. 2 as well. Red-shirt freshman Dylan Alton sports a 19-4 mark at 157 and is ranked No. 5 while true freshman Nico Megaludis is 20-5 at 125 and ranked No. 8. Fellow true freshman Morgan McIntosh closes out Penn State's ranked wrestlers with a No. 12 nod and a 15-5 record at 197. Junior Bryan Pearsall is 11-10 at 141 and sophomore Frank Martellotti is 6-6 at 133. Pearsall is currently among the top 33 in the NCAA's 141-pound RPI, checking in at No. 25. Martellotti is No. 33 in the NCAA's official coaches individual rankings at 133.
Pittsburgh comes in with a 13-1 record. The Panthers are being led by junior 197-pounder Matt Wilps, who has a 26-2 record and is ranked No. 4. Senior Tyler Nauman is 23-4 and ranked No. 12 at 149 while classmate Anthony Zanetta is 24-3 and ranked No. 15 at 125. Penn State leads the all-time series 51-12-3, including a 37-7 win in Rec Hall last year on Jan. 21. Pittsburgh and Penn State tied 19-19 on Dec. 12, 2009, in the meeting prior to that.
Penn State and the rest of the Big Ten will descend upon West Lafayette, Ind., to take part in the 2012 Big Ten Championships. The two-day event will serve as the national qualifier for the conference and takes place on March 3-4. 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 and further affiliates may be added soon. WIEZ 670 AM (Huntingdon/Lewistown) will carry all Sunday duals during the regular season plus the Big Ten and NCAA Championships in March. The regular season schedule of radio broadcasts will be streamed live at www.GoPSUsports.com as part of Penn State's All-Access package, which will also feature live video streams of many home events. Ticket information is accessed easily online at www.GoPSUsports.com/tickets/m-wrestl-tickets.html . 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.
#2 PENN STATE NITTANY LIONS (12-1, 7-1 B1G)
WT NAME EL HT/HS REC
125 #8 Nico Megaludis Fr. Murrysville, Pa./Franklin Regional 20-5
133 Frank Martellotti So. Pittsburgh, Pa./Shady Side 6-6
141 Bryan Pearsall Jr. Lititz, Pa./Warwick 11-10
149 #1 Frank Molinaro Sr. Barnegat, N.J./Southern Regional 24-0
157 #5 Dylan Alton R-Fr. Mill Hall, Pa./Central Mountain 19-4
165 #1 David Taylor So. St. Paris, Ohio/St. Paris Graham 22-0
174 #2 Ed Ruth So. Harrisburg, Pa./Susquehanna Twp. 23-0
184 #2 Quentin Wright Jr. Wingate, Pa./Bald Eagle Area 21-2
197 #12 Morgan McIntosh Fr. Santa Ana, Calif./Calvary Chapel 15-5
285 #6 Cameron Wade Sr. Twinsburg, Ohio/St. Peter Chanel 21-4
#9 PITTSBURGH PANTHERS (13-1*)
WT NAME EL HT/HS REC
125 #15 Anthony Zanetta Jr. Pittsburgh, Pa./Keystone Oaks 24-3
133 Shelton Mack So. Meadville, Pa./Meadville 16-7
141 Travis Shaffer Fr. Derry, Pa./Derry 16-12
149 #12 Tyler Nauman Sr. Middletown, Pa./Middletown 23-4
157 Donnie Tasser Jr. Belle Vernon, Pa./Belle Vernon 11-9
165 Tyler Wilps R-Fr. Pittsburgh, Pa./Chartiers Valley 14-10
174 Ethan Headlee Sr. Waynesburg, Pa./Waynesburg 11-6
184 Andy Vaughan Sr. Gibsonia, Pa./Pittsburgh Central Catholic 17-6
197 #4 Matt Wilps Jr. Pittsburgh, Pa./Chartiers Valley 26-2
285 Joel Yahner Fr. Brockway, Pa./Brockway 6-18
* Pittsburgh hosts Edinboro on Friday, Feb. 17.
Indiv. Rankings Intermat as of 2/13; Team Rankings NWCA/USA Today as of 2/13
HEAD COACH Cael Sanderson
Cael Sanderson, now in his third year as mentor of the Nittany Lions, came to Penn State after three extremely successful years as the head coach at his alma mater. Sanderson's teams did not finish any lower than fifth at the NCAA Championships and never had a wrestler not qualify for nationals, getting 30 of 30 grapplers through to the championship tournament. In 2007, Sanderson's rookie campaign, he led ISU to a 13-3 dual meet record and the first of three straight Big 12 Championships. An NCAA Runner-Up finished in Detroit capped off a wildly successful year as the Cyclones crowned one national championship and Sanderson was honored as Big 12 Coach of the Year, National Rookie Coach of the Year and National Coach of the Year. The next year, Sanderson led ISU to a 16-4 dual meet mark, another Big 12 title and a fifth place finish at nationals. Iowa State's seven All-Americans in 2008 were the most at the school since 1993. In his final year at ISU, Sanderson's team went 15-3 in duals, won its third straight Big 12 title and took third place at the NCAA Championships in St. Louis (just 12 points out of first place). The Cyclones also crowned another national champion. In three years, Sanderson's teams went 44-10, won three conference crowns, qualified all 30 wrestlers for nationals, and earned 15 All-America awards and two individual national titles.
THE PENN STATE YEARS...
In his first year at Penn State (2009-10), he guided the Lions to a 13-6-1 dual meet mark, 5-3 in Big Ten action, and crowned his first Big Ten Champion. The Lions finished No. 10 in the final USA Today/Coaches dual meet poll and placed ninth at NCAAs. Last year, Sanderson guided the Nittany Lions to its first-ever Southern Scuffle Co-Championship (2010-11) and its first Virginia Duals Championship since 1991 (2010-11). In guiding Penn State to a 6-1-1 conference mark, Sanderson equaled the most Big Ten dual meet wins in Penn State history in just his second year at the helm of the Nittany Lions (Penn State won six Big Ten duals in 1998). Sanderson led Penn State to the school's first ever Big Ten Championship on March 5-6 and was named 2011 Big Ten Coach of the Year. Saving the best for last, he led the Nittany Lions to the 2011 NCAA National Championship in Philadelphia on March 17-19, Penn State's first since 1953 and Sanderson's first as a collegiate head coach. This year, Sanderson led Penn State to a school record 7-1 Big Ten dual record and a share of the 2012 Big Ten dual meet championship. Coach Sanderson now sports a 85-18-2 dual meet mark in his sixth year as a collegiate head coach. He is 41-8-2 in his third year at Penn State.
RECORD CROWD GREETS NITTANY LIONS IN ROAD DUAL AT UTAH VALLEY, LIONS ROLL TO VICTORY
Nearly 5,500 Utah wrestling fans (5,470) packed Utah Valley's UCCU Center on Saturday, Feb. 11, to watch the Penn State Nittany Lions take on the Utah Valley Wolverines. The dual set a Utah-state record for Division I wrestling attendance at a dual meet. The Nittany Lions won nine of ten bouts to roll to a 39-3 victory. Penn State got a major from Nico Megaludis at 125, a major from Bryan Pearsall at 141, a 6-0 Frank Molinaro win over #14 Josh Wilson at 149, a decision from Dylan Alton at 157, a pin from David Taylor at 165, a major from Matt Brown at 174, a pin from Quentin Wright at 184, a decision from Morgan McIntosh at 197 and a pin from Cameron Wade at 285.
MOLINARO DOMINATES #14 WILSON OF UVU FOR 200TH CAREER DUAL MEET POINT
Three-time All-American Frank Molinaro downed #14 Josh Wilson of Utah Valley 6-0 (with 4:35 riding time) on 2/11. The decision pushed the Nittany Lion senior to 200 career dual meet points.
COWBURN TAKE THIRD AT EDINBORO OPEN TO LEAD FOUR NITTANY LION PLACERS
Penn State sent seven wrestlers to the Edinboro Open on Saturday, February 11, with four of them earning places at the event. Red-shirt freshman Dirk Cowburn went 6-1 to take third place at 165 in his season debut. Cowburn has steadily been working his way back from an injury and posted two pins, a major and a tech fall to earn the third place finish. Andrew Church placed fourth at 174 with a 3-2 mark, Justin Ortega was fourth at 197 with a 4-2 record and Derek Reber was 4-3 to finish 6th at 133. Cameron Kelly, Seth Beitz and Rex Lutz also competed. Lutz went 3-2 with two pins at 165.
MOLINARO WINS TITLE REMATCH, NAMED B1G WoW
Frank Molinaro has been named the Big Ten Wrestler of the Week for the week ending February 5, 2012. The honor is the first for Molinaro and Penn State's fourth of the year. He won the award after a superb weekend that saw him go 2-0 with a major and amassing, amazingly, over 8:00 riding time in two match-ups. Molinaro posted a 14-6 major over Nebraska's Skylar Galloway on Friday night with 4:53 riding time. His win helped spark Penn State to a 31-6 win at No. 7 Nebraska. Two days later, Molinaro thrilled a sold-out Rec Hall crowd in a rematch of last year's Big Ten Championship bout at 149. The Lion senior dominated No. 7 Eric Grajales of Michigan 6-1 with 3:13 in riding time, leading Penn State to a 34-7 win over 12th-ranked Michigan and a share of the 2012 Big Ten Dual Meet crown.
WADE'S WICKED GOOD WEEKEND
Senior heavyweight Cameron Wade had a superb first weekend of February, helping Penn State win two conference duals with two resounding wins over top-10 Big Ten foes. Wade downed #8 Tucker Lane of Nebraska 8-2 with 1:31 riding time in Lincoln on 2/3 and followed that up by pinning #10 Ben Apland of Michigan at the 3:58 mark in the final big ten dual of his career on 2/5 in Rec Hall.
RUTH AND TAYLOR STILL UNBEATEN IN BIG TEN DUALS
Sophomore All-Americans Ed Ruth and David Taylor have concluded two full Big Ten dual meet seasons and the duo remains unbeaten for their careers. Ruth closed out his second straight 8-0 regular season with a 12-1 major over #8 Justin Zeerip of Michigan on 2/5 and is now 16-0 all-time in conference duals. Twelve of Ruth's 16 conference dual wins are for bonus points (five pins, techs and four majors). Taylor posted a 15-0 technical fall over #14 Dan Yates of Michigan on 2/5 and, like Ruth, went 8-0 this year and is now 16-0 all-time. All but one of Taylor's 16 conference dual wins are for bonus points (eight techs, five majors and two pins).
BROWN GIVES UP 23, PICKS UP 2, WOWS SELL OUT CROWD IN REC HALL DUAL MEET DEBUT
Red-shirt freshman Matt Brown stepped in for injured true freshman Morgan McIntosh in a big way the weekend of February 3-5. Brown weighed in at 174 for duals at Nebraska on 2/3 and home vs. Michigan on 2/5, gave up 23 pounds to move up two weight classes, and came up big for the Nittany Lions with two dual meet wins. Brown downed starting Nebraska 197-pounder, senior James Nakashima, 2-1 in Lincoln on 2/3 to help Penn State to a 31-6 win. Two days later, the Utah-native made his Rec Hall dual meet debut in Penn State's big ten finale against Michigan. This time, Brown beat #15 Max Huntley 3-1, using a last-second takedown to send a sold out Rec Hall to its feet and help Penn State to a 34-7 win over the Wolverines.
SCHOOL RECORD FOR B1G WINS GIVE LIONS SHARE OF REGULAR SEASON DUAL MEET CROWN WITH MINNESOTA
The Nittany Lions' 34-7 win over #12 Michigan on 2/5 helped Penn State set a new school record for conference dual wins in a season (7). The victory allowed Penn State to end the conference dual meet campaign with a 7-1 mark, sharing the 2012 Big Ten regular season dual meet title with fellow conference power Minnesota.
RUTH'S QUICK PIN OVER #8 HEFLIN LEADS LIONS TO 34-9 ROUT OVER #5 OHIO STATE
Sophomore All-American Ed Ruth made short work of 8th-ranked Nick Heflin of Ohio State in a marquee match-up at 174 to lead Penn State to a resounding 34-9 thumping over the 5th-ranked Buckeyes on 1/29. The dual, in a sold out Rec Hall, saw Penn State win eight of ten bouts, post a 16-4 takedown edge and amass a number of lopsided riding time advantages. Penn State got wins from #8 Nico Megaludis at 125 (over #15 Johnnie Dejulius), #1 Frank Molinaro at 149 (a 12-0 major), #7 Dylan Alton at 157 (4-0 over #20 Josh Demas), #1 David Taylor at 165 (a tech fall), #2 Quentin Wright at 184 (a pin), #12 Morgan McIntosh at 197 (a 5-4 win over #20 Andrew Campolattano) and #6 Cameron Wade at 285 (a 9-0 major over #16 Peter Capone.
RUTH AND McINTOSH LEAD LIONS OVER IOWA
All-American Ed Ruth posted a major at 174 and true freshman Morgan McIntosh clinched the deal with a win over a returning All-American as Penn State downed Iowa 22-12 in front of nearly 7,000 fans in a sold out Rec Hall on Sunday, Jan. 22. Ruth's 10-1 major over No. 9 Ethan Lofthouse at 174 helped keep the momentum going in what would be seven straight wins by Penn State to close out the dual. McIntosh thrilled the capacity crowd with a 5-3 sudden victory win over All-American Grant Gambrall at 197, clinching the victory. Penn State got consecutive wins from Frank Molinaro (149), Dylan Alton (157), David Taylor (165), Ruth (174), Quentin Wright (184), McIntosh (197) and Cameron Wade (285). The Lions dominated the dual in terms of wins (7), riding time points (4-0 edge) and takedowns (18-10).
IOWA CROWD LARGEST SINCE REC HALL RECONFIG!
The crowd of 6,796 fans that saw Penn State take down Iowa 22-12 on 1/22 was the largest Rec Hall crowd since the building was reconfigured in the early/mid-1990s. The crowd out-distanced last year's Penn State/Iowa crowd of 6,686 on Jan. 30, 2011.
MOLINARO'S ASSAULT ON THE PSU RECORD BOOKS
Senior Frank Molinaro is currently moving up many of Penn State's all-time records lists. His 11-5 dismantling of Iowa's Mike Kelly on Jan. 22 was the 137th match of his Penn State career, moving him into the top 20 all-time. He is also top 20 in wins and dual meet wins. Here is a breakdown of where the Lion veteran sits on some Penn State lists: Matches wrestled (17th with 141); victories (12th with 112); dual meet victories (8th with 54).
WADE NOW 6TH ON ALL-TIME PINS LIST; WRIGHT MOVES INTO TOP 15
Cameron Wade entered the season with 21 career falls. The senior heavyweight has nine on the year and now has 30 for his career, 6th on Penn State's all-time list. Junior Quentin Wright had 12 after two full seasons and has 12 this year, giving him 24 for his career and putting him in 13th all-time at Penn State.
David Taylor AND Ed Ruth'S STUNNING DUAL MEET POINT AVERAGES
Just 22 matches into his collegiate dual meet career, sophomore David Taylor surpassed the 100 point mark in dual meet points. Taylor is now 32-0 in collegiate duals with 155 dual meet points. That's an average of 4.84 dual points per match. Classmate Ed Ruth passed the 100 point mark a mere 23 matches as well. Ruth is now is 30-0 with 140 career dual meet points for an equally impressive average of 4.67 dual points per match.
MOLINARO, TAYLOR, RUTH STILL PERFECT AND PILING UP BONUS WINS
The All-American trio of Frank Molinaro (149), David Taylor (157) and Ed Ruth (174) are all still perfect on the year and a combined 69-0 with 17 majors, 18 tech falls, 21 pins and an injury default victory. They have combined for 57 bonus point wins in 69 matches. Molinaro is 24-0 with 9 majors, 5 techs and three pins, giving him 17 bonus wins in 24 matches. Taylor is 22-0 with 10 pins, 7 tech falls and 3 majors, giving him 20 bonus point wins in 22 matches. Ruth is 23-0 with 8 pins, 6 techs, 5 majors and 1 injury default, giving him 20 bonus wins in 23 matches.
NITTANY LION WRESTLING ATTENDANCE SOARING
Six dual meets into the 2011-12 season and Penn State's average wrestling attendance is soaring once again. All six of Penn State's duals to date have topped the 6,000 fan mark, including sellouts against Minnesota, Iowa, Ohio State, Michigan and the upcoming dual vs. Pitt. Penn State is average 6,435 fans per event to date, by far a school record since the Rec Hall reconfiguration two decades ago.
THREE WEEKENDS, THREE ROAD TRIPS, SUCCESS!
Penn State left for the Southern Scuffle in Chattanooga, Tenn., on New Year's Eve Day to compete in the Scuffle on Jan. 1-2. Add to that three straight Big Ten road duals over the next two weekends and the Nittany Lions have been living, and feasting, on the road for quite a while. Penn State won the Southern Scuffle, running away from Minnesota and Cornell in the process; won nine of ten bouts in a 36-6 dual win at Michigan State on 1/8; won nine of ten bouts in a 38-3 dual win at Northwestern on 1/13; and won all ten bouts in a 43-0 shutout at Wisconsin on 1/15 (Penn State's first ever Big Ten dual shutout and the first shutout of UW since 1958). All in all, that's a major national tournament title with four individual champions and three Big Ten road duals by a combined score of 117-9 (with a 28-2 record).
RUTH NABS LIONS' THIRD BIG TEN WoW HONOR
Penn State Nittany Lion wrestler Ed Ruth was named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week for the week ending Jan. 15, 2012. The honor is the second for the Nittany Lion sophomore and he shares this week's with Ohio State's Logan Stieber. The Lion All-American, ranked No. 2 at 174, was unstoppable in a 2-0 road weekend for Penn State in Big Ten action. Ruth made short work of No. 9 Lee Munster of Northwestern, blistering the top-ten Wildcat to the tune of an 18-3 technical fall at the 5:37 mark. Ruth helped spark Penn State to a 38-3 dismantling of No. 17 Northwestern in Evanston. Two days later, Ruth posted an equally quick 17-2 tech fall over Wisconsin's Matt Liegel at the same 5:37 mark. Ruth's win was part of Penn State's 43-0 shutout of Wisconsin in Madison. The shut-out was Penn State's first ever in a Big Ten dual and was the first shut-out of Wisconsin since 1958. The honor was the third for Penn State this year as junior Bryan Pearsall won on Dec. 20 and sophomore All-American David Taylor won on Jan. 3.
NITTANY LIONS POST FIRST EVER BIG TEN DUAL SHUTOUT AT WISCONSIN; HAND BADGERS FIRST ZERO SINCE 1958
Two days after downing Northwestern 38-3 on 1/13, Penn State posted a resounding 43-0 shutout win at Wisconsin on 1/15. The shutout, highlighted by All-American Frank Molinaro's 12-0 major over #9 Cole Schmitt at 149, marks the first time that Penn State notched a shutout in a Big Ten dual, home or away. The blanking of the Badgers was the first against UW since Iowa shut out the Badgers in 1958.
MEGALUDIS DOWNS #7 MELE; RUTH TECHS #9 MUNSTER AS LIONS ROLL 38-3 AT NORTHWESTERN
True freshman Nico Megaludis handed #7 Leve Mele of Northwestern a 7-3 loss at 125 and All-American Ed Ruth hammered #9 Lee Munster at 174 to the tune of an 18-3 technical fall at the 5:37 mark of the second period. The wins highlighted a 38-3 dismantling of the Wildcats in Evanston. Penn State's only loss was #9 Dylan Alton's close 2-1 decision on riding time to #3 Jason Welch at 157.
RUGGEAR TAKES THIRD AT HITCHCOCK INVITATIONAL
Red-shirting sophomore Nick Ruggear had a fine day at Sunday's Floyd `Shorty' Hitchcock Invitational on the campus of Millersville University. The Nittany Lion heavyweight led a contingent of Penn Staters who competed unattached at the open event. Ruggear, who started at 197 for Penn State last year and is red-shirting this season, went 5-1 at heavyweight with a pin. He advanced to the semifinals before losing to Lehigh's John Delia by decision. Ruggear then wrestled back to take third place.
MOLINARO AND ALTON DOWN RANKED FOES IN NITTANY LIONS' WIN OVER MICHIGAN STATE
Senior Frank Molinaro and red-shirt freshman Dylan Alton made short work of Michigan State's ranked grapplers in Penn State's 36-6 win over Michigan State in Battle Creek's Kellog Arena on January 8. Molinaro downed #18 Dan Osterman 9-3 and Alton took care of #14 Anthony Jones 1-0 to lead Penn State to the victory.
NITTANY LIONS CLAIM SECOND STRAIGHT SOUTHERN SCUFFLE CHAMPIONSHIP, THIS TIME OUTRIGHT
After tying Cornell for the Southern Scuffle championship last year, Penn State rolled away from the competition by crowning four champions and won the 2012 Southern Scuffle outright on Jan. 1-2 in Chattanooga. Penn State won the title with 191.5 points while Minnesota was second with 177.5. The Nittany Lions entered day two with a slim 7.5 point lead over the gophers and used a superb 6-3 run in the semifinals and a 4-2 showing in the finals to claim the crown. All-American David Taylor won the 165-pound title and was named Outstanding Wrestler. Joining Taylor as champs were All-American Frank Molinaro at 149, All-American Ed Ruth at 174 and All-American Quentin Wright at 184. Penn State posted a superb 56-23 overall mark among its 15 wrestlers, collecting 18 pins, nine tech falls and 11 majors along the way. 38 of Penn State's 56 wins were of the bonus point variety.
TAYLOR BLAZES HIS WAY TO SCUFFLE TITLE TO EARN TOURNEY OW AND BIG TEN WoW HONORS
All-American David Taylor blazed his way to his second straight Southern Scuffle title and was named the tournament's Outstanding Wrestler (teammate Ed Ruth won the honor last year). Top-ranked Taylor took on No. 10 Cody Yohn of Minnesota in the finals at 165. Already owning a tech fall over the 10th-ranked Gopher, Taylor did it one better this time with a team-title clinching pin in the first period (2:36). Taylor, who claimed his second Scuffle crown, went 5-0 with three pins, a tech and a major. He was also named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week (1/3) for his efforts.
MOLINARO STRONG ON HIS WAY TO SCUFFLE CROWN AND 100TH CAREER WIN
No. 1 Frank Molinaro met No. 11 Dylan Ness of Minnesota in the finals of the 2012 Southern Scuffle and the bout belonged in full to the three-time Nittany Lion All-American. Molinaro scored big for Penn State with a dominating 9-1 major over Ness and won his first Scuffle title with a 5-0 mark, including two techs and a major. His first win of the event was the 100th for his career, making him the 26th member of Penn State's 100-win club.
RUTH'S PERFECTION LEADS TO SECOND SCUFFLE CROWN
All-American Ed Ruth, last year's Scuffle Outstanding Wrestler, won his second straight title in an All-PSU final at 174. Ruth downed talented teammate Matt Brown, posting a 6-3 decision. Ruth's win gave him his second straight Scuffle title and he went 6-0 with three pins, a tech and a major.
WRIGHT HAMMERS #4 BOSAK ON WAY TO SCUFFLE TITLE
Defending National Champion Quentin Wright and put the exclamation point on Penn State's Southern Scuffle team title by dominating fourth-ranked Steve Bosak of Cornell to the tune of a 10-3 win in the 184-pound final.. Wright claimed his first Scuffle title with the victory as he went 5-0 with three pins.
ALTON AND BROWN TAKE SECOND AT SOUTHERN SCUFFLE
The red-shirt freshmen tandem of Dylan Alton and Matt Brown advanced to the finals of the 2012 Southern Scuffle to help Penn State claim the team title in Chattanooga. Alton, ranked No. 10, met No. 1 Kyle Dake of Cornell in the finals at 157. Alton battled the two-time NCAA champ tough before dropping a 3-0 decision to take second place in his first Scuffle. Alton went 4-1 with two pins and a major. Brown lost to teammate #2 Ed Ruth in the 174-pound title and ended an outstanding tournament with a 4-1 mark, including wins over the No. 7 and No. 11-ranked wrestlers.
PEARSALL PINS #14 BONSON TO LEAD LIONS TO 50-0 WIN AT LOCK HAVEN; NAMED BIG TEN WRESTLER OF THE WEEK
Junior Bryan Pearsall pinned nationally ranked Matt Bonson of Lock Haven to lead the Nittany Lions to a 50-0 shut-out win at Lock Haven on 12/18. Pearsall pinned No. 14 Bonson in the second period of their battle at 141. The fall was one of four for Penn State in the dual (Nico Megaludis, Frank Molinaro and Cameron Wade added pins as well), which featured a 41-0 takedown edge for the Nittany Lions. Pearsall was named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week for the week ending 12/18, the first such honor of his career.
BROWN GETS TF IN PENN STATE DUAL DEBUT
Matt Brown got the call at 174 in Penn State's 50-0 shut-out win at Lock Haven on 12/18 and posted a convincing 19-4 technical fall in just 3:47 over LHU's Aaron McKinney. The win helped Penn State earn its first shut-out since a 48-0 win over LHU back in December of `10.
WRIGHT PINS #17 RYAN TO LEAD LIONS TO 34-6 WIN OVER WEST VIRGINIA
Defending national champion Quentin Wright, ranked No. 5 at 184, pinned No. 17 Matt Ryan of West Virginia in the first period (1:57) to spark Penn State to a 34-6 win over WVU in a packed Rec Hall. Over 6,000 fans watched Penn State post a 35-2 edge in takedowns in the lopsided win on 12/11.
LIONS RUN AWAY FROM #10 LEHIGH FOR ROAD WIN IN 100TH MEETING BETWEEN TWO TEAMS
Penn State built up a huge early lead and coasted to a 24-12 win at No. 10 Lehigh on 12/9. Penn State got a key win from David Taylor over No. 9 Brandon Hatchett (8-5) and majors from Bryan Pearsall, Frank Molinaro and David Taylor while Ed Ruth, leading 12-1 at the time, got an injury forfeit win at 174. The win gave Penn State a 63-34-3 lead in the all-time series as the dual was the 100th meeting between the two eastern powers.
LIONS CROWN SIX CHAMPS AT `11 NLO
Penn State crowned six champions at the 2011 Nittany Lion Open. Freshman Nico Megaludis won the title at 125; senior Frank Molinaro won the title at 149 (his third Open crown); sophomore David Taylor won the title at 165 (his second Open crown); sophomore Ed Ruth won the 174-pound bracket (his first NLO gold); junior Quentin Wright won the 184-pound title (his first as well); and senior Cameron Wade won the championship at heavyweight (his second). Wins over ranked wrestlers for the champions included: Molinaro with an 8-0 major over #20 Steve Santos of Columbia and a first period pin (1:23) of #9 Donnie Vinson of Binghamton; Taylor with a pin (4:40) of #14 Peter Yates of Virginia Tech and a 14-6 major over former American All-American Steve Fittery; and Ruth with a 7-4 win over #17 Jimmy Sheptock of Maryland.
PENN STATE WITH 18 PLACE WINNERS AT `11 NLO
In addition to the above six champions, Penn State had 12 other place winners at the 2011 Nittany Lion Open, headed by finalists/runners-up Dylan Alton at 157 and Morgan McIntosh at 197. Jordan Conaway was fourth at 125, Frank Martellotti was eighth at 133, Andrew Alton was third at 149, Seth Beitz was fifth at 149, James Vollrath was third at 157, Nick Fischer was fourth at 157, Matt Brown was fifth at 174, Justin Ortega was eighth at 197, Nick Ruggear was fourth at 285 and Jon Gingrich was fifth at 285.
THREE LIONS GRAB WINS IN MINNESOTA DUAL
Penn State's loss to Minnesota on 11/20 in front of a sold out Rec Hall crowd of over 6,200 including three dominating wins from a trio of Penn State All-Americans. No. 1 David Taylor handled No. 8 Cody Yohn with ease, notching a 16-1 technical fall in only 4:29 at 165. No. 1 Frank Molinaro roughed up No. 5 Dylan Ness, notching five takedowns to roll to a 16-10 win at 149. No. 2 Ed Ruth pinned Gopher Eric Ortiz at the 2:27 mark at 174.
FIVE LIONS WIN TITLES AT LAKER OPEN
Five of Penn State's ten-man contingent taking part unattached at the Mercyhurst Laker Open came home with first place titles with seven of the nine playing in the top three. Penn State earned five firsts, a second and a third place showing in Erie. Red-shirt freshman Kyle Moran went 4-0 at 141 to win the first place title while classmate Seth Beitz was 5-0 with a pin at 149 to win the title. Red-shirt freshman Matt Brown was superb with a 5-0 mark to win the crown at 174. Brown notched two pins and three tech falls to roll to the title. Brown defeated teammate Andrew Church in the finals at 174. Church was 3-1 with a major to place second in front of a hometown crowd. Junior Justin Ortega was a perfect 4-0 at 197 to win the title while red-shirt freshman Jon Gingrich won another heavyweight title, this time going 4-0 with three pins to win it all. Also competing for Penn State was true freshman Mike Waters, who went 2-2 at 141; true freshman Rex Lutz, who won once at 165, and red-shirt freshman Brandon Phillips, who was 3-2 at 174.
LION FRESHMEN SHINE IN PENN STATE DEBUTS
Plenty of new faces picked up big wins for Penn State in their collegiate debuts in the Nittany Lions' 39-3 win over Bloomsburg in the season opener on 11/13. True freshman Nico Megaludis pinned Bloomsburg's Sean Boylan at the 2:15 mark at 125, giving Penn State an early leg up in the dual. Red-shirt freshman Dylan Alton downed No. 14 Frank Hickman 10-8 at 157. True freshman Morgan McIntosh then posted a 6-0 win over Huskie Richard Perry at 197.
LIONS USE THREE FIRST PERIOD PINS TO BLAST HUSKIES
Penn State used three early pins to rout the Bloomsburg Huskies before 6,059 fans in the team's season opener in Rec Hall on 11/13. True freshman Nico Megaludis got a pin over BU's Sean Boylan at the 2:15 mark at 125, getting the Nittany Lion season off to a fast start. All-American David Taylor pinned BU's Kevin Hartnett at the 2:21 mark at 165 and All-American Quentin Wright pinned Huskie Mike Mirra at the 1:55 mark at 184. Penn State also picked up tech fall from All-American Frank Molinaro at 149 and a major from Cameron Wade at HWT.
SIX LIONS WIN CROWNS AT ESU OPEN
Eighteen Nittany Lion wrestlers trekked to East Stroudsburg University for the ESU Open on Saturday with six Penn Staters grabbing individual crowns. In all, 14 of Penn State's 18 entrants placed at the event. Red-shirt freshman Matt Brown went 5-0 with two pins and three majors to win the title at 174. True freshman Jordan Conaway went 4-0 with a pin and a major to win the title at 125. One win, the major, was against a non-collegiate wrestler, meaning Conaway was officially 3-0 on the day. True freshman Luke Frey was 4-0 at 141, winning the title and picking up two tech falls along the way. Sophomore Andrew Alton dominated 149, going 5-0 with two pins and two majors to win the title. One pin was against a non-collegiate wrestler, meaning Alton went 4-0 with a pin officially. Sophomore James Vollrath was 5-0 with a pin, a tech and a major to win the title at 157. Rounding out Penn State's champions was red-shirt freshman Jonathan Gingrich, who went 5-0 with a major and a pin at heavyweight. His pin was against an NC grappler, giving him a 4-0 official mark on the day.
FREY, CHURCH AND CONAWAY PLACE AT CLARION OPEN
Six members of Penn State's wrestling team competed unattached at the 2011 Clarion Knight Point Open on Sunday. True freshmen Jordan Conaway and Luke Frey and sophomore Andrew Church each placed at their respective weights. Frey, a true freshman from Montoursville, took the runner-up spot at 141, advancing to the finals with three wins including a major and a tech fall before dropping a 5-1 decision in the finals to unattached Daniel Neff. Conaway, an Abbottstown native, placed third at 125 with a 4-1 mark that included two tech falls and a 13-7 loss in the semifinals to the eventual champion. Church, an Erie native, went 3-1 at 174 and advanced to the finals before losing to take the runner-up spot. Other Nittany Lions competing included Michael Waters, who went 2-2 at 141; and Brandon Phillips, who went 2-2 at 174.
PENN STATE RANKED #2 IN NWCA/USA TODAY COACHES POLL; #1 IN TPI; EIGHT LIONS RANKED BY INTERMAT
Eight members of the Nittany Lion wrestling team continue to be ranked in the latest version of the Intermat national individual rankings. Four Nittany Lion All-Americans are ranked in the top two and all eight are listed in the top 12. Penn State is now 12-1 overall, 7-1 in the Big Ten, after a 39-3 win at Utah Valley on Saturday in front of a Utah-state college dual meet record 5,470 fans. Head coach Cael Sanderson's Lions are ranked No. 2 in the latest USA Today/NWCA Coaches Poll and continue to hold the No. 1 in Intermat's Tournament Power Index (TPI). Three-time All-American Frank Molinaro (Barnegat, N.J.) is 24-0 on the year and ranked No. 1 at 149. All-American David Taylor (St. Paris, Ohio) is 22-0 thus far and is No. 1 at 165 and All-American Ed Ruth (Harrisburg, Pa.) is 23-0 at ranked No. 2 at 174. Two-time All-American Quentin Wright (Wingate, Pa.) is No. 2 at 184 with a 21-2 mark. Red-shirt freshman Dylan Alton (Mill Hall, Pa.) is 19-4 at 157 and ranked No. 5 while senior Cameron Wade (Twinsburg, Ohio) is 21-4 at heavyweight and is ranked No. 6. True freshman Nico Megaludis (Murrysville, Pa.) is 20-5 at 125 and ranked No. 8 while classmate Morgan McIntosh (Santa Ana, Calif.) is 15-5 at 197 and ranked No. 12. Penn State is still ranked No. 2 in the latest NWCA/USA Today Coaches Poll. Oklahoma State is No. 1 with 250 points while Penn State is close behind with 239. Minnesota is in third with 226 while Iowa sits at No. 4 with 223. Illinois now sits at No. 5 with 208 points. The Nittany Lions maintained their hold on the No. 1 spot on Intermat's Tournament Power Index as well. Penn State checks in at No. 1 with a 106.5 TPI while Oklahoma State is No. 2 with 84.5. Minnesota is No. 3 with 75.0, Iowa is No. 4 with 65.5 while Cornell is No. 5 with 61.5.