Penn State Wrestling

Anthony Cassar cracks individual rankings as Penn State wrestling holds steady at No. 1 in poll

Penn State’s Anthony Cassar’s two wins over ranked opponents Sunday at the Keystone Classic in Philadelphia were enough to earn him the No. 11 spot at 197 by the InterMat NCAA Division I rankings.
Penn State’s Anthony Cassar’s two wins over ranked opponents Sunday at the Keystone Classic in Philadelphia were enough to earn him the No. 11 spot at 197 by the InterMat NCAA Division I rankings. For the Centre Daily Times, file

It looks as if Sunday’s Keystone Classic provided some clarity to the rankings conundrum Penn State had caused at 197.

Previously unranked sophomore Anthony Cassar rose to No. 11 in the individual rankings at 197 after a banner day at the Classic. He edged out teammate and then-No. 4 Matt McCutcheon 6-5 in the semifinals and went on to beat then-No. 12 Frank Mattiace of Penn, 7-4, for the title. McCutcheon battled back to make it to the third-place bout, where he injury defeaulted and finished fourth.

McCutcheon is no longer ranked, while Cassar made his first career appearance in the InterMat NCAA Division I rankings.

As a team, Penn State remains the unanimous No. 1 in the National Wrestling Coaches Association/USA Today Division I Team Coaches Poll.

Also of note this week is that despite winning a Keystone Classic title, Penn State junior Jered Cortez has still not cracked the InterMat rankings. A win over a ranked opponent would help Cortez get on the board. And he’ll have his first chance to do that on Dec. 17 when he’ll likely face Indiana’s Cole Weaver, ranked No. 16, at Rec Hall.

Aside from Cassar, all other Nittany Lions held steady at their previous ranks, with Zain Retherford (149), Jason Nolf (157), Vincenzo Joseph (165) and Bo Nickal (184) all at No. 1 in their respective weight classes. Mark Hall is No. 2 at 174, Nick Nevills is No. 3 at heavyweight, and Corey Keener is ranked 15th at 133.

In the team poll, Penn State (3-0) is holding steady with 400 points. The 1-0 Buckeyes’ spot also remains unchanged from last week, with 384 points at No. 2, and Oklahoma State (2-0) picked up two points, bringing the Cowboys to 368 points at No. 3.

The biggest shakeup in the polls this week comes at the hands of the Lehigh Mountain Hawks, who put a 27-8 beating on then-No. 4 Michigan on Sunday. With the win, Lehigh (3-0) catapults from 10th into fifth place, bumping 4-0 Missouri up to No. 4, and dropping Michigan to No. 9.

The Nittany Lions will have their first real test of the season Dec. 3, when they take on Lehigh at Allentown.

NWCA/USA Today Division I Team Coaches Poll

Nov. 21, 2017

Rank

Team (First)

Record

Points

Conference

Previous

1

Penn State

3-0

400

Big Ten

1

2

Ohio State

1-0

384

Big Ten

2

3

Oklahoma State

2-0

368

Big 12

3

4

Missouri

4-0

345

MAC

5

5

Lehigh

3-0

319

EIWA

10

6

NC State

6-0

312

ACC

7

7

Iowa

3-0

299

Big Ten

8

8

Minnesota

2-1

292

Big Ten

6

9

Michigan

1-1

286

Big Ten

4

10

Virginia Tech

3-0

267

ACC

9

11

Rutgers

3-0

235

Big Ten

11

12

Arizona State

1-2

213

Pac-12

12

13

Nebraska

1-0

191

Big Ten

15

14

Illinois

1-1

190

Big Ten

14

15

Cornell

1-0

187

EIWA

19

16

South Dakota State

0-1

153

Big 12

16

17

Northern Iowa

1-1

146

Big 12

13

18

Central Michigan

1-1

130

MAC

17

19

Wisconsin

2-0

129

Big Ten

18

20

Purdue

3-0

92

Big Ten

22

21

Oklahoma

1-2

85

Big 12

20

22

Rider

0-0

53

EWL

23

23

Edinboro

2-1

48

EWL

24

24 (tie)

Pittsburgh

1-2

13

ACC

25

24 (tie)

Stanford

2-2

13

Pac-12

21

Others receiving votes: Maryland 11, Drexel 10, Navy 6, Appalachian State 5, Kent State 5, Chattanooga 4, North Dakota State 4, North Carolina 2, Northwestern 2, Lock Haven 1

Dropped out: None

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