Penn State wrestling missed an opportunity during Friday morning’s session to tighten the team race with Ohio State.
The Buckeyes’ No. 1 seed Kollin Moore at 197 pounds got pinned by unseeded Kyle Conel of Kent State in the first period. However, the Nittany Lions’ Shakur Rasheed, No. 5 at 197, fell 5-4 to North Carolina State’s Michael Macchiavello.
Penn State moved five into the semifinals, which take place Friday night, and trail Ohio State by 13.5 points.
The Nittany Lions’ Zain Retherford (149 pounds), Jason Nolf (157), Vincenzo Joseph (165), Mark Hall (174) and Bo Nickal (184) all moved one step closer to repeating. Nick Nevills (285) dropped into the consolations a round short of assuring himself a second straight All-American status. Nick Lee (141) is also one win away from becoming an All-American in the consolations.
Retherford again was dominant as he racked up bonus points. He scored 10 points in the first and second periods to earn a 20-2 technical fall of Oklahoma State’s Boo Lewallen in 5:00.
Nolf had a tough quarterfinals matchup with Iowa’s Michael Kemerer — a matchup that was expected to be the finals at the beginning of the year. Nolf used a takedown in the first and third periods to top the Hawkeye 6-2.
Joseph had to put in extra work to advance. He was tied with Nebraska’s Isaiah White at 1-1 after regulation. After a scoreless sudden victory period, the duo traded escapes in the first sets of rideouts. In the second sudden victory period, Joseph snapped off a takedown for the 4-2 win.
Hall nearly pinned Northern Iowa’s Taylor Lujan in the first period but only finished wiht a 4-1 lead. He tacked on an escape and riding point for a 6-2 victory.
Nickal took on a true freshman in Cornell’s Max Dean. Dean is the younger brother of Gabe Dean, who Nickal topped in last year’s finals. The result was the same this year too, Nickal amassed five takedowns in a 13-7 win over the younger Dean.
Nevills was in a good spot agaisnt Oregon State’s Amar Dhesi but he cost himself by giving up two interlocking points. Dhesi tacked on a reversal and sent the Nittany Lion to the consolations with a 4-2 defeat.
Lee topped Central Michigan’s Mason Smith 5-0 to start his day. He then reached the consolation fourth round with a 13-5 major decision over Indiana’s Cole Weaver.
Corey Keener (133) was tied 2-2 with Northern Colorado’s Ricardo Montoya in the second period. However, Montoya tossed Keener to his back and pinned him in 4:27 to eliminate the graduate transfer.