No. 1 Penn State Wrestling Defeats No. 3 Ohio State In Second BJC Dual
The top ranked Nittany Lions took on Ohio State Friday evening in a battle between two of the best teams in the nation. The Buckeyes came in with a 9-2 overall record and a 6-1 record in the Big Ten. The Buckeyes’ only losses came to Michigan and Missouri. Penn State was undefeated at 12-0 with a 7-0 Big Ten. The dual was electric and lived up to its lofty billing. Penn State eventually ran away 24-14, never looking back after jumping ahead early.
How It Happened
Starting in the 125, No. 4 Nico Megaludis wrestled No. 1 Nathan Tomasello in a match which might’ve determined the weight class’ top ranking. The match was even overall, but a late takedown by Tomasello gave him the 3-1 win, leading to an early 3-0 lead for Ohio State. In the 133, Jordan Conaway went down early to Johnni DiJulius 4-0. Conaway was able to salvage three points at the end of the first — fueling his momentum for the rest of the match. Conaway won 8-4 bring the match to a 3-3 standstill.
In the 141, No. 14 Jimmy Gulibon took on No. 4 Micah Jordan in another even match. Gulibon was unable to stop Jordan, however, as he won 4-3 to put the Buckeyes back on top. The lead changes continued with No. 1 Zain Retherford. Looking to get the Nittany Lions back into the match, Retherford pinned his opponent to help the Nittany Lions surge to a 9-6 lead. In the final match before halftime, No. 1 Jason Nolf wrestled No. 11 Jake Ryan, where Nolf continued his dominance with a 19-6 win that gave the Nittany Lions a 13-6 lead at halftime.
In the first match after halftime, Geno Morelli and No. 2 Bo Jordan went at it, with Morelli giving Jordan a run for his money. Much to the dismay of the packed BJC, Jordan prevailed in the end with a 3-2 win to cut the Penn State lead to 13-9. Desperately needing a win to pull away from the Buckeyes, Bo Nickal wrestled Myles Martin in the 174. Nickal was able to score 10 points in the third to win the match 11-5, extending the lead to 16-9.
In the 184, Matt McCutcheon made his return to the mat after an injury had sidelined him previously. McCutcheon beat No. 13 Kenny Courts by a 4-0 decision, which gave the Nittany Lions a decisive lead. All Morgan McIntosh needed to do was win in his match, and the Nittany Lions would be victorious. He did just that, winning by technical fall 24-9 to give Penn State a 24-9 lead. In the final match of the night, Jan Johnson took on world champion and No. 2 Kyle Snyder. Snyder dominated Johnson to a 25-9 technical fall, but Penn State won 24-14.
Wrestler Of The Match
Zain Retherford | Sophomore | 149-Pound Weight Class
The only pin of the night went to Zain Retherford, making him worthy of wrestler of the match honors. He propelled the Nittany Lions into a 9-6 lead with the pin, helping his team break away and capture a commanding victory against one of the top teams in the nation.
Penn State will travel to Lehigh next Friday in a non-conference battle. The Nittany Lions hope to keep their winning streak going with only two duals remaining before the Big Ten Championships.