Penn State assistant coach Frank Molinaro got his first taste of wrestling with his U.S. teammates this past weekend in the United World Wrestling World Cup Duals in the Los Angeles Forum.
Many have questioned Molinaro’s wrestling style and whether he would succeed on the international level. This weekend he proved he belongs by posting an undefeated record and earning two wins over internationally-ranked wrestlers in the 65-kilogram (143 pounds) weight class. The United States finished fourth.
Molinaro’s closest matches came on Sunday.
In the bronze medal match, he won by tie-breaker criteria in a 4-4 win over Georgia’s Zurab Iakobishvili, who is ranked No. 10. Georgia topped the U.S. 17-16. In the semifinals, the U.S. suffered a loss to Iran 17-15. Molinaro edged No. 4 Sayed Mohammadi 4-3.
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Molinaro started Saturday’s wrestling with a 5-0 win over Rajneesh as the U.S. defeated India 29-5. In the night session, Molinaro got into the head of Azerbaijan’s Magomed Muslimov. Molinaro came away with a 4-1 victory but Muslimov gave up a penalty point for a slap and was later deducted a point for poking Molinaro in the eye. The Americans won the dual 27-4.