Five Nittany Lions Place First at Nittany Lion Open
In Penn State’s annual open tournament, Andrew Alton, Matt Brown, Ed Ruth, David Taylor, and Quentin Wright all came in first.
Andrew Alton had three consecutive pins to start off the tournament followed by a major decision. Alton, ranked sixth by Intermat, didn’t slow down once he got to the semifinals — he beat UNC wrestler Heilmann on a pin just a 1:36 into the match. In the finals, Alton faced Augustus Sako who was unattached from Virginia. Alton won on a pin two minutes into the bout.
Matt Brown, in his second year after returning from his mission trip, is expected to be one of the nation’s top wrestlers in the 174 weight class, with Ruth moving from 174 to 184. Brown had 3 major decisions and a tech fall. Brown, ranked third by Intermat, faced Rutgers’ Greg Zannetti in the finals, who was an NCAA qualifier last season and is currently ranked eleventh. Brown won 7-4.
Top-ranked Ed Ruth beat all of his opponents on either a major or tech fall until the finals. Ruth defeated tenth ranked Jimmy Sheptock of Maryland in the finals on an 11-4 decision.
Second-ranked David Taylor won all of his bouts on either a tech fall or a pin, including a pin on Russell Benner of Hofstra in the round of 16. In the finals, Taylor faced Mark Lewandowski of Buffalo, which resulted in a pin in the third period.
Quentin Wright, ranked third, won his first three bouts on pins. Wright defeated unattached Cornell wrestler William George in the semifinals 6-1. Wright defeated his teammate Morgan McIntosh, an unattached Penn Stater, in the finals 5-2.
Second ranked Nico Megaludis lost in the finals to Anthony Zanetta, an unattached wrestler from Pitt. Megaludis had a pin and two major decisions before falling to Zanetta 3-2. Unattached Penn State freshman wrestler Jimmy Gulibon won his first bout on a tech fall. Gulibon faced unattached Lehigh wrestler Mason Beckman. Gulibon lost 3-2. Fifth-ranked Dylan Alton lost in the finals to third-ranked James Fleming of Clarion 9-4 in overtime. This match up will be worth following in the NCAA Tournament in March. In the heavyweights, Jimmy Lawson lost on a major decision 12-1 to unattached NC State wrestler Nick Gqiazdowski.
18 Penn State wrestlers out of the 30 that participated placed in the event. Team rankings were not counted at the tournament. Penn State will face #35 Indiana at home next Sunday in Rec Hall at 2 p.m.