From An Open Tournament To The Starting Lineup: A Weekend To Remember For Penn State Wrestling’s Creighton Edsell
In the span of 24 hours, Penn State wrestling’s Creighton Edsell went from suiting up at an open tournament to bringing 6,333 fans at Rec Hall to their feet.
Edsell, along with six teammates, traveled to Millersville University Saturday to compete in the Floyd “Shorty” Hitchcock Memorial Tournament at 174 lbs. However, after Edsell’s first match, head coach Cael Sanderson received a call that 184-pounder Aaron Brooks was going to miss Sunday’s dual against Northwestern.
Sanderson promptly pulled Edsell, who once more this season has jumped up to 184 lbs. to fill in for the Nittany Lions, out of the tournament to get him ready for Sunday.
When he wrestled against the Wildcats, Edsell turned in the definition of a gritty performance, something that’s sure to win over any Rec Hall crowd and provoke it to chant a wrestler’s name whether it’s his venue debut or farewell dual.
After trailing Northwestern’s Jack Jessen 1-0 entering the third period, Edsell seized control of the bout and engineered a comeback with an escape, takedown, and riding time point to win 4-1. The win helped Penn State to a 30-9 win over the Wildcats.
With Mark Hall’s firm grasp on 174 lbs., Edsell has yet to wrestle at his normal weight in a dual, but he’s made his limited action count, winning both dual matches that he’s moved up to 184 lbs. for, following his 5-2 win against Andrew Buckley of Navy in November.
The way Edsell has embraced his role as the emergency 184-pounder speaks to how grateful he is to be able to compete. After all, he didn’t get to wrestle at all as a true freshman last season due to an injury.
“If you look back at last year, I was in a sling at this time,” he said after the dual Sunday. “Being able to come back a year later and being healthier and being able to compete and have fun is a blessing.”
And spoken like a true Penn State wrestler, Edsell didn’t divulge much about his preparation for the dual, saying “It’s about always being ready whenever the coaches ask. Yesterday, getting the match in, and today, nothing really changed. Just always being ready whenever the coaches asked.”
But when you ask Sanderson about how Edsell prepared for the match, the legendary coach has a bit more of a cynical perspective of how the redshirt freshman spent Saturday.
“He was the co-pilot. Very critical as the backseat driver.”
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