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Penn State Wrestling: No. 1 Penn State Downs No. 11 Northwestern for 50th Consecutive Dual Win

by on January 12, 2019 10:57 AM

No. 1 Penn State won its 50th consecutive dual with an easy victory against No. 11 Northwestern on the road Friday night. The Nittany Lions beat the Wildcats 33-8 in an offensive clinic where Penn State registered 50 takedowns, compared to only seven by Northwestern.

How It Happened

Penn State found itself in a hole after the hottest wrestler in the country, No. 1 Sebastian Rivera, beat Devin Schnupp with an 18-2 technical fall at 125 pounds.

The Nittany Lions bounced back from the slow start with three strong wins and a flurry of takedowns at 133, 141, and 149. No. 14 Roman Bravo-Young, No. 4 Nick Lee, and No. 9 Brady Berge combined for 21 takedowns in their respective bouts to help give the Nittany Lions the team lead.

Bravo-Young got the scoring started with a 15-9 win over Colin Valdiviez and Lee followed with a 16-6 major over Alec McKenna. After opening up a a 6-2 lead in the first period, Lee ended the bout on a 10-4 run to breeze by McKenna.

Berge started the 149-pound bout with a bang, notching five takedowns in the first period to go up 10-4 on Shayne Oster. He kept the offensive firepower coming throughout the match, scoring four more takedowns and amassing more than two minutes of riding time en route to a 19-7 major.

Berge’s win gave Penn State an 11-5 lead entering the most anticipated bout of the dual between No. 1 Jason Nolf and No. 3 Ryan Deakin, who many have contested could be the one wrestler actually able to hang with Nolf this season.

Relatively speaking, Deakin was. He wasn’t pinned, nor was he tech falled. Instead, he dropped a 19-8 major decision to Nolf, who took Deakin down eight times in what was the 100th win of his career. The monumental win sent the Nittany Lions into intermission with a 15-5 lead over the Wildcats.

Penn State’s wining streak ended when wrestling resumed. Fresh off a run to the Southern Scuffle finals, Bo Pipher bumped up to 165 pounds to face Tyler Moreland and fill in for No. 1 Vincenzo Joseph, but fell 11-9. Moreland led 9-4 after two periods before a late comeback attempt by Pipher with two takedowns fell short. Pipher is 0-2 at 165 pounds and 9-7 overall this season.

No. 1 Mark Hall got Penn State back on track with a 10-4 win over Johnny Sebastian that made the team score 18-8. No. 3 Shakur Rasheed followed with an 18-2 technical fall against Brendan Devine. Rasheed took Devine down three times and picked up 10 back points in the first period before recording the tech fall with a takedown to begin the second period.

No. 1 Bo Nickal recorded his seventh consecutive fall in the 197-pound bout. After pinning his way to a Southern Scuffle title and putting Zach Chakonis on his back Friday, Nickal now has six pins in 2019 and 51 in his career, three behind Nolf, who broke the program career record last week.

The dual ended at 285 pounds between No. 4 Anthony Cassar and No. 19 Conan Jennings, one of only three ranked opponents the Nittany Lions faced Friday. In a strong showing against a ranked wrestler, Cassar cruised past Jennings with a 12-3 major decision to make the final score 33-8.

What’s Next

Penn State returns home for its first Rec Hall dual of 2019 when it hosts Wisconsin on Sunday at 1 p.m.

Anthony Colucci is a writer for Onward State
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