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Penn State Wrestling Sweeps Michigan State 35-0

No. 1 Penn State wrestling (6-0, 3-0 Big Ten) took care of business Sunday, sweeping Michigan State (7-3, 0-3 Big Ten) 35-0 in East Lansing. It was the Nittany Lions’ 50th straight dual victory dating back to 2019.

Highlighting the dual was a thrilling multiple sudden victory win from Levi Haines over ranked opponent Chase Saldate to remain ranked No. 1 and undefeated.

How It Happened

125 Pounds

Kicking off the dual was No. 14 Braeden Davis taking on Tristan Lujan. A quick takedown in the opening seconds from Davis gave him an early 3-1 lead over the Spartan as the action rolled into the second period. The only point scored in the middle period was an escape from Lujan, chipping away at Davis’ 3-2 lead. After escaping from bottom position to start the third period, Davis put the match away with his second takedown of the bou and took a 7-3 decision victory.

133 Pounds

Walking onto the mat next were No. 4 Aaron Nagao and Andy Hampton. Quickly bouncing back from a sudden victory loss in his last match, Nagao grabbed four takedowns in the first three minutes of the bout, creating a 12-3 lead after one period. Nagao continued to add to his point total with an escape and a takedown during the middle period, carrying a 16-3 lead heading into the final two minutes. Nagao then executed an impressive reversal quickly into the third, securing the 18-3 tech fall victory at 3:21.

141 Pounds

At 141 pounds, No. 2 Beau Bartlett stared down No. 33 Jordan Hamdan. Despite a good shot from Bartlett, effective takedown defense from Hamdan wouldn’t let any points be scored in the first. An escape from Hamdan gave him the first point of the match as the Spartan took a slim 1-0 lead heading into the final two minutes. In a flurry of movements, Bartlett escaped from bottom position and grabbed his first takedown of the match along with collecting a handful of near-fall points. This proved to be enough for Bartlett as he took a 7-3 decision victory after being down to start the third period.

Penn State led the dual 11-0 after the first three matches.

149 Pounds

In his second straight dual in the lineup, David Evans took on Braden Stauffenberg. Evans started strong with a fast takedown to kick off the bout, riding a 3-1 lead heading into the second. Evans took the only point awarded in the second after he escaped from bottom position to extend his lead to 4-1. Despite letting up an early escape, Davis displayed stellar takedown defense to hold on to a 4-2 decision victory.

157 Pounds

In action next were No. 1 Haines and No. 21 Saldate. Haines fell to a strong takedown from Saldate, trailing 3-1 heading into the second period. Haines began to chip away at the Spartan’s lead with an early escape to start the middle period, cutting the deficit to 3-2 heading into the final period. After finding himself in a precarious position, Haines turned the tables on an aggressive Saldate and countered for the Nittany Lion’s first takedown of the bout and leveled the match at five heading into sudden victory.

A deep shot from Saldate didn’t result in points for either wrestler, pushing the match into the first tie-breaker period. A tension-filled review overturning a locked hands call on Haines kept the bout tied through the first overtime and the second sudden victory period. It wasn’t until the second overtime that Haines fell behind by one point due to a stalling call, however, Haines secured a reversal with less than five seconds remaining, granting him the 6-5 sudden victory decision win.

165 Pounds

Wrestling next was No. 9 Mitchell Mesenbrink and No. 10 Caleb Fish. A back-and-forth first period resulted in Mesenbrink holding a narrow 7-6 lead after the opening three minutes. On the contrary, the second period was very one-sided in favor of Mesenbink, escaping and shooting for yet another takedown to take an 11-6 lead after two. Mesenbrink kept the pedal down throughout the third period, handing Fish his first loss of the season with an 18-9 major decision.

The dual score stood at 21-0 in favor of the Nittany Lions.

174 Pounds

Filling in for Carter Starocci once again at 174 pounds was Terrell Barraclough taking on DJ Shannon. After no points were scored in the first period, Barraclough escaped from bottom position and secured his first takedown of the match as he rode out the remainder of the second with a 4-0 lead. Another takedown and a riding time point awarded to Barraclough gave him the 8-1 decision victory.

184 Pounds

Next to the mat was No. 5 Bernie Truax taking on Layne Malczewski. After a long feeling-out period to open up the first, Truax scored the opening takedown to lead 3-1 heading into the second. The only point scored in the second went to Malczewski for his escape from bottom position, tightening the gap to Truax at 3-2. An escape from Truax was the only point scored in the final period, granting the Nittany Lion the 4-2 decision victory.

The dual score stood at 27-0 with two matches remaining.

197 Pounds

In action next was No. 1 Aaron Brooks battling No. 29 Kael Wisler. An impressive six takedowns in the first period from Brooks followed up by an additional takedown in the second period gave Brooks the 21-6 tech fall at 4:00.

Heavyweight

In the last match of the dual, Lucas Cochran took on Josh Terrill. Cochran scored the first takedown of the match halfway through the first period, taking a 3-0 lead into the second. After riding out the entire middle period in top position, Cochran quickly escaped to start the third, leading 4-0 with over 150 seconds of riding time. Terrill couldn’t break down Cochran’s takedown defense, giving Cochran the 5-0 decision.

The Nittany Lions won the dual 35-0.

What’s Next?

The Nittany Lions will continue their three-match road trip as they take on Maryland on Sunday, January 28, in College Park. The dual will begin at noon and be broadcast on the Big Ten Network.

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About the Author

Brendan Wagner

Brendan is a Junior majoring in print and media journalism. Born in Pittsburgh, he now lives in Mooresville, North Carolina. As a die-hard Pittsburgh sports fan, you can find him on Twitter, @brchwags, often complaining about the Pittsburgh Steelers and Matt Canada

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