As the consolation rounds of the Big Ten wresting tournament wrapped up Sunday at the Breslin Center, the field for NCAAs began to take shape.
With a convincing 11-3 major decision over Purdue’s Ben Thornton, Penn State’s Corey Keener proved he belongs there.
The senior transfer from Central Michigan became the ninth Nittany Lion to qualify for nationals.
Nick Lee (141 pounds) and Nick Nevills (285) both won their consolation semifinals matches to battle for third place later this afternoon.
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After giving up the first takedown, Lee used a strong second-period rideout to change the tone of his match against Iowa’s Vince Turk. Lee finished with an 8-3 decision.
Nevills, in a rematch with Maryland’s No. 5 Yousef Hemida, controlled most of the match, tallying two takedowns and riding time for the 6-1 decision.
Lee will face Purdue’s No. 5 Nate Limmex, while Nevills will take on Iowa’s No. 4 Sam Stoll, who he beat 3-2 in their dual a month ago.
Carson Kuhn fell just short of an automatic bid, dropping a 6-4 decision to Michigan’s No. 8 Drew Mattin. Kuhn then went on to pin Wisconsin’s Johnny Jimenez in 2:21 to finish 11th, just outside the 10 automatic qualifications at 125 pounds. Kuhn would only make it to Cleveland if one of the Big Ten’s automatic qualifiers would be unable to go for the NCAAs.