Penn State wrestling overcomes slow start to soundly defeat Penn,
In its toughest match to date, Penn State showed resilience, defeating a talented Penn team despite two of its national champions not wrestling.
The Nittany Lions found themselves behind early in the team score, but relied on a string of wins over the back half of the dual to pull off the victory.
Sophomore Beau Bartlett once again wrestled in what many would consider to be the match of the night, defeating Penn’s No. 23 Anthony Artalona in overtime by a 4-3 decision.
Bartlett has had a habit of getting himself into high pressure situations at the end of matches this season, but has yet to fail to pull off a win in any of those situations.
The Nittany Lions started off the match shakily with two early defeats that weren’t exactly unexpected.
At 125 pounds, Penn’s Ryan Miller bested Penn State sophomore Baylor Shunk via an 8-2 decision, while at 133 sophomore Brandon Meredith fell to fellow sophomore Michael Colaiocco and gave up a last-second takedown to gift a 10-2 major decision victory to Colaiocco.
Colaiocco, the No. 12 wrestler in the country at 133 pounds, was initially slated to wrestle defending national champion Roman Bravo-Young in what was thought to be the match of the night, but Bravo-Young did not wrestle in the match.
The blue and white got back on track with No. 1 Nick Lee besting Penn’s No. 28 Carmen Ferrante via a 6-3 decision at 141 pounds.
Bartlett continued to build on Lee’s success in the ensuing match by securing his win in overtime at 149 pounds; however, it was the Quakers that would be back in business in the following bout.
In the 157-pound bout, Penn’s No. 21-ranked Doug Zapf topped sophomore Terrell Barraclough via a 4-2 decision.
Following an intermission, junior Creighton Edsell pulled off Penn State’s second overtime win of the night, utilizing a takedown in sudden victory to beat Penn’s Lucas Ravano with a 6-4 decision at 165 pounds.
The reigning national champion and No. 1-ranked wrestler at 174 pounds — Carter Starocci kept the ball rolling for the Nittany Lions, earning a major decision over Penn’s No. 21-ranked Nick Incontrera with a 13-3 win, but was unable to find any back points to earn a technical fall like he has earlier in the season.
At 184 pounds, sophomore Donovon Ball filled in nicely for the Nittany Lions’ No. 1-ranked Aaron Brooks who did not wrestle.
Ball fell just one point short of earning a major decision over Penn’s Jesse Martinez, but still took the win via an 11-4 decision.
Cornell transfer Max Dean kept the points coming for Penn State, earning a 10-0 major decision over Cole Urbas at 197 pounds to secure the win in the dual for the blue and white.
Cael Sanderson elected to forfeit the heavyweight bout after securing the victory, making the final score of the dual 20-16.
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