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Penn State Wrestling Receives Five Top-Three Seeds For 2023 NCAA Championship

Fresh off its first Big Ten Championship since 2019 on Sunday, Penn State wrestling is back and ready for its final event of the season.

On Wednesday night, Penn State received two No. 1 spots and five athletes within the top three seeds. Altogether, Penn State has nine wrestlers heading to the national tournament. This is the 10th time that head coach Cael Sanderson has had nine or more qualifiers in the tournament throughout his career.

Here is the list of each qualifier’s seed, weight, and first-round opponent:

133 lbs. — No. 1 Roman Bravo-Young vs. No. 32 Jack Maida (American) or McGwire Midkiff (North Dakota State)

141 lbs. — No. 6 Beau Bartlett vs. No. 27 Shannon Hanna (Campbell)

149 lbs. — No. 13 Shayne Van Ness vs. No. 20 Johnny Lovett (Central Michigan)

157 lbs. — No. 2 Levi Haines vs. No. 31 Ashton Eyler (Lock Haven)

165 lbs. — No. 13 Alex Facundo vs. No. 20 Holden Heller (Pitt)

174 lbs. — No. 1 Carter Starocci vs. No. 32 Will Miller (Appalachian State) or No. 33 John Worthing (Clarion)

184 lbs. — No. 3 Aaron Brooks vs. No. 30 Matthew Waddell (Chattanooga)

197 lbs. — No. 9 Max Dean vs. No. 24 Levi Hopkins (Campbell)

285 lbs. — No. 3 Greg Kerkvliet vs. No. 30 Hayden Copass (Purdue)

The Nittany Lions are favorites across the board to bring home the national title, but a number of wrestlers will need to push through sturdy opponents to find a spot on the final day of competition.

The 2023 NCAA Championship will stretch from March 16 to 18 in the BOK Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Be sure to follow along with Onward State for session recaps and live coverage via Onward Sports on Twitter.

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About the Author

Mara McKeon

Mara is a senior staff writer majoring in English and public relations. She loves all things sports and anything that has peanut butter. You can usually find her obsessing over country music or Penn State wrestling and counting down the days until she gets to see Luke Combs in Beaver Stadium. Feel free to reach her on Twitter @MckeonMara, and for more formal affairs, her email is [email protected].

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