Penn State Wrestling

Sanderson says Suriano is ‘in’ for the NCAA tournament

Coach Cael Sanderson said Monday that he expects freshman Nick Suriano (125) to wrestle in this week’s NCAA tournament. controls Northwestern's Anthony Rubinetti in the 125 pound bout during the Sunday, January 29, 2017 match in Rec Hall. Suriano won by fall at 3:10.
Coach Cael Sanderson said Monday that he expects freshman Nick Suriano (125) to wrestle in this week’s NCAA tournament. controls Northwestern's Anthony Rubinetti in the 125 pound bout during the Sunday, January 29, 2017 match in Rec Hall. Suriano won by fall at 3:10. Centre Daily Times, file

A big question on the minds of many Penn State wrestling fans heading into the NCAA tournament Thursday through Saturday, is the health of true-freshman Nick Suriano.

“He’s in,” head coach Cael Sanderson said when asked if Suriano would be “active” for the tournament.

“He’s down in the room right now, wrestling,” Sandserson said. “He’s progressing along and he’s looking good.”

Suriano suffered an ankle injury Feb. 19 in the national duals championship against Oklahoma State. He medically defaulted out of the Big Ten tournament on March 4 due to the injury.

He earned a No.-3 seed in the 125-pound weight class for this week’s NCAA tournament.

Sanderson addressed the media Monday at Rec Hall for the first time since the Nittany Lions’ second-place finish at the Big Ten tournament. Ohio State claimed first place, with 139.5 team points to Penn State’s 130.

But Sanderson said he and his team are more focused on the big prize.

“We want to be our best at every event,” he said. “But we want to win the national championship — that’s the goal.”

The Nittany Lions will be looking to defend their title and win their sixth national championship in seven years.

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