Banged-Up PSU Edges Lehigh 23-19


ALLENTOWN – No. 1 Penn State (4-0, 0-0 B1G) erased a big lead by winning the final four bouts to down No. 7 Lehigh (4-1) in front of a sold out PPL Center crowd on Sunday. The Nittany Lions overcame missing two starters to comeback for a 23-19 victory, staying unbeaten on the year and improving their dual meet win streak to 35-straight.

Nearly 10,000 fans packed the Allentown venue to see the battle of Pennsylvania wrestling powers. The dual featured nine wrestlers ranked in InterMat’s top ten and head coach Cael Sanderson’s crew battled back from 12-0 and 19-11 deficits to grab the win.

The dual began at 125 where Nittany Lion redshirt freshman Devin Schnupp (Lititz, Pa.) was pinned by No. 5 Darian Cruz of Lehigh at the 1:13 mark. With No. 18 Corey Keener (Schuylkill Haven, Pa.) being held out with an injury, sophomore Dominic Giannangeli (Murrysville, Pa.) made his Penn State dual meet debut at 133 against No. 3 Scotty Parker of Lehigh. Parker picked up a second period fall at the 4:12 mark to give Lehigh a 12-0 lead after two bouts. Junior Jered Cortez (Carol Stream, Ill.) dropped a 2-0 decision to Luke Karam at 141, giving Lehigh a 15-0 lead through three bouts.

Senior Zain Retherford (Benton, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 149, picked up Penn State’s first win of the dual by pinning Lehigh’s Cortlandt Schuyler in the first period, getting the fall at the 1:27 mark. Junior Jason Nolf (Yatesboro, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 157, posted a 23-8 (6:40) technical fall over LU’s Ian Brown, snapping his season starting pin streak at seven but staying unbeaten on the year. Penn State trailed 15-11 at intermission.

With No. 1 Vincenzo Joseph (Pittsburgh, Pa.) not competing, redshirt freshman Bo Pipher (Paonia, Colo.) made his Lion dual debut up at 165. Pipher dropped a 24-12 major to No. 15 Gordon Wolf, keeping the ranked Mountain Hawk from posting a late tech fall. The LU win put the Mountain Hawks up 19-11. Sophomore Mark Hall (Apple Valley, Minn.), ranked No. 2 at 174, began Penn State’s comeback by posting the only takedown in a 3-2 win over No. 5 Jordan Kutler, cutting Lehigh’s lead to 19-14. Junior Bo Nickal (Allen, Texas), ranked No. 1 at 184, duplicated Hall’s effort in another top five match-up, notching the only takedown in a 3-2 win over No. 4 Ryan Preisch at 184, cutting the LU edge to 19-17.

Sophomore Anthony Cassar (Rocky Hill, N.J.), ranked No. 11 at 197, gave Penn State its first lead of the dual by dominating Jake Jakobsen. Cassar rolled to four takedowns in an 8-3 win to put the Nittany Lions up 20-19 heading into the final bout. Junior Nick Nevills (Clovis, Calif.), ranked No. 3 at 285, clinched the dual with a strong 2-0 win over No. 14 Jordan Wood. A third period rideout gave the Nittany Lion riding time and clinched the 23-19 Penn State dual victory.

Penn State posted a 20-12 edge in takedowns with Lehigh pick up all of theirs in three bouts. Penn State is 32-8 in its first four duals of the year, including 11 pins. Penn State is now 4-0 overall, 0-0 in the Big Ten. Lehigh falls to 4-1.

Penn State returns to action against Indiana on Sunday, Dec. 17, at 2 p.m. in Rec Hall in a BTN national telecast.

#1 Penn State 23, #7 Lehigh 19
125: #5 Darian Cruz LEH pinned Devin Schnupp PSU, WBF (1:13) 0-6
133: #3 Scotty Parker LEH pinned Dominic Giannangeli PSU, WBF (4:12) 0-12
141: Luke Karam LEH dec. Jered Cortez PSU, 2-0 0-15
149: #1 Zain Retherford PSU pinned Cortlandt Schuyler LEH, WBF (1:27) 6-15
157: #1 Jason Nolf PSU tech fall Ian Brown LEH, 23-8 (TF; 6:40) 11-15
165: #15 Gordon Wolf LEH maj. dec. Bo Pipher PSU, 24-12 11-19
174: #2 Mark Hall PSU dec. #5 Jordan Kutler LEH, 3-2 14-19
184: #1 Bo Nickal PSU dec. #4 Ryan Preisch LEH, 3-2 17-19
197: #11 Anthony Cassar PSU dec. Jake Jakobsen LEH, 8-3 20-19
285: #3 Nick Nevills PSU dec. #14 Jordan Wood LEH, 2-0 23-19
Attendance: 9,896
Records: Penn State 4-0, Lehigh 4-1
Up Next for Penn State: home vs. Indiana, Dec. 17, 2 p.m. in Rec Hall

BOUT-BY-BOUT:
125: Redshirt freshman Devin Schnupp (Lititz, Pa.) met defending NCAA Champion and No. 5 Darian Cruz at 125. Schnupp fought off a couple early Cruz shots before the Mountain Hawk connected on a low single to open up a 2-0 lead. He then turned Schnupp to his back and picked up the pin at the 1:13 mark.

133: With No. 18 Corey Keener (Schuylkill Haven, Pa.) held out with an injury, sophomore Dominic Giannangeli (Murrysville, Pa.) made his Penn State dual debut against No. 3 Scotty Parker at 133. Giannangeli fought off an early Parker shot and backed out of bounds, picking up a stall warning at the 2:07 mark. Parker connected on the takedown shortly after and led 2-0. Giannangeli escaped to a 2-1 score with 1:30 on the clock. The duo battled evenly for rest of the period. Trailing by one, Giannangeli chose down to start the second period and escaped to a 2-2 tie. Parker then caught Giannangeli with a throw and picked up a pin at the 4:12 mark.

141: Junior Jered Cortez (Carol Stream, Ill.) took on Lehigh’s Luke Karam at 141. The duo worked for position over the first minute plus with action ending in a stalemate at the 1:18 mark. Cortez connected on a low single at the :30 mark and worked to pull the Mountain Hawk in bounds for a takedown. But the clock ran out and action moved to the second period tied 0-0. Karam chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 1-0 lead. The bout once again moved through the next minute scoreless with neither wrestler breaking through the other’s defense. Cortez once again shot late but like the first period, the clock hit zeroes. Trailing by one, Cortez chose down to start the third period. Karam broke the Lion junior down to the mat and worked his riding time up over a minute. He continued to maintain control and rode Cortez out for the 2-0 victory.

149: Senior Zain Retherford (Benton, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 149, met Cortlandt Schuyler. Retherford scored quickly, taking Schuyler down and releasing him in the first :30. He then notched a second takedown and worked the Mountain Hawk to his back. After going chest to chest, Retherford picked up the first period pin at the 1:27 mark.

157: Junior Jason Nolf (Yatesboro, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 157, battled Lehigh junior Ian Brown. Nolf fought off an early Brown shot and then closed in for the trip and takedown a minute into the bout to lead 2-1. Nolf added a second takedown and cut to lead 4-2 with 1:10 left in the opening period. The Lion quickly took Brown down a third time and led 6-3 with :37 on the clock. The Lion picked up a fourth takedown and led 8-3 after one. Nolf chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 9-3 lead. He then picked up two quick takedowns and upped his lead to 1Nolf chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 9-3 lead. He then picked up two quick takedowns and upped his lead to 13-5 with 1:14 on the clock. Nolf added on three more takedowns to lead 19-7 after two periods. Brown chose neutral to start the third period and Nolf exploded through a takedown to lead 21-7. He then clinched his riding time point and cut Brown loose. Nolf ended the match with a final takedown to post the 23-8 technical fall at the 6:40 mark.

165: With No. 1 Vincenzo Joseph (Pittsburgh, Pa.) not competing, redshirt freshman Bo Pipher (Paonia, Colo.) made his Lion dual debut up at 165 and took on No. 15 Gordon Wolf. Wolf scored quickly, taking Pipher down to open up a 2-0 lead. Pipher worked for a reversal and drove his way to the tying reversal at the 1:50 mark. Wolf countered with his own reversal and Pipher scrambled for another reversal of his own. A stalemate forced a reset with Wolf in control at the 1:00 mark. Wolf cut Pipher loose to a 4-3 score and action resumed in the center circle. Wolf notched another takedown and cut and closed out the period with two more takedowns to lead 10-5 after one. Pipher chose down to start the second period and escaped to a 10-6 score. He then took Wolf down to cut into the lead but Wolf reversed the Lion to up his lead to 12-9 after a Pipher escape. Wolf added one more takedown to lead 14-9 with over 2:00 in time after two periods. Wolf chose down to start the third period and reversed Pipher to lead 16-10 after cutting Pipher loose. Wolf added two quick takedowns to lead 20-12. Pipher connected on a single leg but Wolf countered and took a 22-12 lead with :40 left. Pipher gave up a stall point and riding time but fought off Wolf’s attempts for a tech fall, dropping the 24-12 major.

174: Sophomore Mark Hall (Apple Valley, Minn.), ranked No. 2 at 174, faced off against No. 5 Jordan Kutler of Lehigh. The duo battled evenly for over two minutes with neither man scoring. The final minute saw Hall up the tempo but Kutler’s defense kept the bout scoreless through the opening stanza. Kutler chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 1-0 lead. Hall worked his way in on a high single but Kutler scrambled his way to a stalemate with 1:20 on the clock. Hall worked his way into a takedown and the bout moved into the final :30 of the period tied 2-2 after a quick Kutler escape. Hall chose down to start the third period and quickly escaped to a 3-2 lead. The duo worked the middle of the mat as the clock moved below 1:00. Hall fought off a solid Kutler shot and with :20 left, a reset sent action to the center circle. Hall shook off a final Kutler shot and posted the 3-2 win.

184: Junior Bo Nickal (Allen, Texas), ranked No. 1 at 184, met No. 4 Ryan Preisch in another top five match-up. Nickal scored early, taking a 2-0 lead with 1:40 on the clock. Preisch escaped to a 2-1 score but Nickal continued to press the tempo. The Lion junior forced Preisch back for the entire period and he led 2-1 after one period. Preisch had not been hit with a stall warning yet however. Nickal chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 3-1 lead. Preisch finally got hit for his first stall warning at the :40 mark and Nickal continued to be the aggressor. Preisch chose down to start the third period and worked his way to an escaped and a 3-2 Nickal lead with 1:35 left. Nickal nearly connected on a low single but a stalemate stopped action with 1:03 left in the bout. Nickal went on to post the 3-2 victory, fighting off a late Preisch flurry.

197: Sophomore Anthony Cassar (Rocky Hill, N.J.), ranked No. 11 at 197, met Jake Jakobsen. Cassar scored quickly, blowing through a hard double to take a 2-1 lead :30 into the bout. The Lion sophomore spent the next minute plus looking for an opening and found it with :30 on the clock, using another strong double to up his lead to 4-1. Cassar then finished on top and led 4-1 after one period. Cassar chose down to start the second period. Jakobsen was able to maintain control for the entire period, however, and Cassar led 4-1 after two periods. Jakobsen chose down to start the third period and quickly escaped to a 4-2 Cassar lead. Cassar iced the bout with a third double leg takedown, upping his lead to 6-2 with :45 on the clock. The Lion then controlled the action from the top for :20 before Jakobsen escaped. Cassar added a fourth takedown as the period ended and rolled to a strong 8-3 win.

285: Junior Nick Nevills (Clovis, Calif.), ranked No. 3 at 285, battled No. 14 Jordan Wood. The duo battled evenly for the opening two minutes, with Nevills taking numerous shots. The Lion junior nearly picked up the first takedown at :50 with a fast low single but Wood was able to step away and keep the bout scoreless through three minutes. Nevills chose down to start the second period and quickly escaped to a 1-0 lead. Wood got in on a low single, nearly pulling Nevills to the mat at the 1:30 mark, but Nevills was able to work his way to the edge of the mat and a reset was called at the 1:10 mark. Trailing by one, Wood chose down to start the third period and Nevills worked to control the action from the top position. Nevills maintained control for the first :40 and then he broke Wood down flat, building his riding time up over 1:00 with a strong ride. Nevills continued work the top position, forcing Wood back to the mat as the clock moved under :20. With :09 on the clock, the officials stopped the action to check for locked hands on Nevills. No locked hands were called, Nevills finished on top, and rolled to the 2-0 win, clinching the dual.