Archive for the ‘Wrestling, NCAA Wrestling Championship’ Category

Penn State won the NCAA wrestling championship for the fourth consecutive year

March 24, 2019


Photo Credit: Aaron Doster / USA Today

Penn State won the 2019 NCAA wrestling championship on March 24, 2019 for the fourth consecutive year and for the eighth time in the past nine years.  Penn State had three individual champions and two second place finishers.  The Nittany Lions had the championship wrapped up before the finals.

Bo Nickal of Penn State was named the tournament’s Most Dominant Wrestler.  The Coach of the Year award went to Scott Goodale of Rutgers.

125 POUNDS — Spencer Lee of Iowa won his second consecutive national title when he beat previously undefeated Jack Mueller of Virginia by a score of 5-0.  No. 1 seed Sebastian Rivera of Northwestern beat Vitali Arujau of Cornell by a score of 8-3 for third place.  Nicholas Piccininni of Oklahoma State took fifth place.

133 POUNDS — Nick Suriano of Rutgers became his school’s first wrestler to win a national championship when he beat No. 1 seed Daton Fix of Oklahoma State by a score of 4-2 in sudden victory.  Stevan Micic of Michigan beat Luke Pletcher of Ohio State in a 6-1 decision for third place.  Fifth place went to Austin DeSanto of Iowa.

141 POUNDS — Yianni Diakomihalis of Cornell, the No. 1 seed, beat No. 2 seed Joey McKenna of Ohio State by a sudden victory score of 6-4.  Jadin Eierman of Missouri beat Dom Demas of Oklahoma for third place in a 2-0 decision.  Nick Lee of Penn State placed fifth.

149 POUNDS — Anthony Ashnault of Rutgers, the No. 1 seed, became his school’s second ever national champion when he defeated No.  2 seed Micah Jordan of Ohio State in a 9-4 decision.  Austin O’Connor of North Carolina was third with a 7-5 decision over Mitch Finesilver of Duke.  Fifth place went to Matthew Kolodzik of Princeton.

157 POUNDS — Jason Nolf of Penn State, the No. 1 seed, won his third consecutive championship by beating No. 2 seed Tyler Berger of Nebraska in a 10-2 major decision.  Nolf scored three takedowns in the first period.  He finished his career with a record of 117-3. It was Nolf’s sixth win over Berger during their careers.  Alec Pantaleo of Michigan took third place by beating Hayden Hidlay of North Carolina State by a score of 5-3.  Kaleb Young of Iowa placed fifth.

165 POUNDS — Redshirt freshman Mehki Lewis of Virginia Tech became his school’s first wrestler to win a national wrestling championship when he beat returning national champion Vincenzo Joseph of Penn State, a No. 2 seed, by a score of 7-1.  Lewis, a No. 8 seed, broke a scoreless tie with four nearfall points midway through the second period and then added another takedown in the third period.  Third place went to Myles Amine of Michigan, who beat No. 2 seed Daniel Lewis if Missouri in a 4-3 decision.  Fifth place went to Isaiah White of Nebraska.

174 POUNDS — In a rematch of last year’s 174 pound final, Zahid Valencia of Arizona State, a No. 3 seed, beat No. 1 seed Mark Hall of Penn State in a 4-3 decision.  It was the third consecutive year that the two wrestlers faced each other in the finals.   Hall won in 2017 as a freshman and Valencia won in 2018.  Myles Amine of Michigan beat No. 2 seed Daniel Lewis of Missouri by a 4-3 decision to take third place.  Jordan McFadden of Virginia Tech placed fifth.

184 POUNDS — Drew Foster of the University of Northern Iowa beat Max Dean of Cornell in a 6-4 decision.  Foster was the first national champion for Northern Iowa since 2000. No 1 seed Myles Martin of Ohio State beat Ryan Preisch of Lehigh by a score of 5-3 to take third place.  Martin was beaten 5-4 by Dean in the semi-finals.  No. 2 seed Shakur Rasheed of Penn State was beaten in the quarter-finals and did not place.  Emery Parker of Illinois took fifth place.

197 POUNDS — Bo Nickal of Penn State, a No. 1 seed, won his third consecutive national championship in a 5-1 decision over No. 2 seed Kollin Moore of Ohio State.  It was Nickal’s third victory over Moore this season.  Nickal concluded his collegiate career with a record of 120-3. Preston Weigel of Oklahoma State took third place by beating Patrick Brucki of Princeton by a score of 7-1.  Josh Hokit of Fresno State was the fifth place finisher.

285 POUNDS — Anthony Cessar of Penn State, a No. 2 seed, beat No. 1 seed Derek White of Oklahoma State in a 10-1 major decision.  Cessar was 30-1 for the year and his only loss this season was to White.  Cessar was the first Penn State heavyweight to win a national title since Kerry McCoy in 1997. Gable Steveson of Minnesota beat Jordan Wood of Lehigh by a score of 4-0 for third place.  Steveson lost 4-3 to Cessar in the semi-finals.  Oregon State’s Amar Dhesi took fifth place.

Penn State won the championship with 137.5 points.  Second went to  Ohio State (96.5), third to Oklahoma State (84), fourth to Iowa (76), fifth to Michigan (62.5) and sixth to Missouri (62).

The tournament took place at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh.  A crowd of 18,950 attended the finals. The six-session total attendance was 109,405.


Photo Credit: Tony Rotundo / WrestlersAre




The brackets have been announced for the 2019 NCAA wrestling championships

March 14, 2019


Photo Credit: Stillwater News Press

The NCAA released the brackets for the 2019 NCAA wrestling championship that will begin on March 21, 2019 at Pittsburgh.  There will be 33 wrestlers in each weight class.

The top four seeds in each weight division are:

125 pounds — (1) Sebastian Rivera, Northwestern (25-1), (2) Nicholas Piccininni, Oklahoma State (30-0), (3) Spencer Lee, Iowa (18-3) and (4) Ronnie Bresser, Oregon State (23-1).

133 pounds — (1) Daton Fix, Oklahoma State (30-1), (2) Stevan Micic, Michigan (14-0), (3) Nick Suriano, Rutgers (24-3) and (4) Mickey Phillipi, Pittsburgh (19-2).

141 pounds — (1) Yanni Diakomihalis, Cornell (24-0), (2) Joey McKenna, Ohio State (20-2), (3) Nick Lee, Penn State (27-2) and (4) Josh Alber, Northern Iowa (31-5).

149 pounds — (1) Anthony Ashnault, Rutgers (27-0), (2) Micah Jordan, Ohio State (25-2), (3) Mitch Finesilver, Duke (28-3) and (4) Brock Mauller, Missouri (29-2).

157 pounds — (1) Jason Nolf, Penn State (26-0), (2) Tyler Berger, Nebraska (24-3), (3) Ryan Deakin, Northwestern (29-4) and (4) Alec Pantaleo, Michigan (18-7).

165 pounds — (1) Alex Marinelli, Iowa (23-0), (2) Vincenzo Joseph, Penn State (23-1), (3) Joshua Shields, Arizona State (27-3) and (4) Evan Wick, Wisconsin (28-4).

174 pounds — (1) Mark Hall, Penn State (26-0), (2) Daniel Lewis, Missouri (24-1), (3) Zahid Valencia, Arizona State (26-2) and (4) Myles Amine, Michigan (17-3).

184 pounds — (1) Myles Martin, Ohio State (20-0), (2) Shakur Rasheed, Penn State (18-0), (3) Zachary Zavatsky, Vermont (24-3) and (4) Emery Parker, Illinois (17-3).

197 pounds — (1) Bo Nickal, Penn State (25-0), (2) Kollin Moore, Ohio State (19-2), (3) Preston Weigel, Oklahoma State (11-0) and (4) Patrik Brucki, Princeton (29-1).

285 pounds — (1) Derek White, Oklahoma State (28-1), (2) Anthony Cassar, Penn State (25-1), (3) Gable Steveson, Minnesota (30-1) and (4) Jordan Wood, Lehigh (21-3).

Penn State won the title last year and is currently ranked first in the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) poll.


Photo Credit: Marshalltown Times-Republican


Penn State dominates NCAA wrestling power rankings with 3 wrestlers ranked on top

March 3, 2019


Photo Credit: Max Seiders / Penn State

The latest NCAA power rankings were released on Feb. 26, 2019.  Penn State dominated the power rankings with three wrestlers rated No. 1: Jason Nolf, Vincenzo Joseph and Bo Nickal.  Each was the NCAA champion last year.

The top three rated wrestlers in each weight division were:

125 pounds — (1) Sebastian Rivera (Northwestern Sophomore) (22-1; only loss came at 133 pounds to Stevan Micic of Michigan in a 10-4 match), (2) Nick Piccininni (Oklahoma State Junior) and (3) Spencer Lee (Iowa Sophomore).  Spencer was last year’s NCAA champion.  Rivera was fourth place in last year’s NCAA championship.

133 pounds — (1) Stevan Micic (Michigan Junior) (13-0; participates in the nation’s deepest weight class), (2) Daton Fix (Oklahoma State Freshman) and (3) Austin DeSanto (Iowa Sophomore).  Micic was the runner-up in last year’s NCAA championship.

141 pounds — (1) Yianni Diakomihalis (Cornell Sophomore) (perfect 20-0 record), (2) John Alber (Northern Iowa Senior) and (3) Jaydin Eierman (Missouri Junior).  Diakomihalis was last year’s NCAA champion.

149 pounds — (1) Anthony Ashnault (Rutgers Graduate Student with Senior Standing) (23-0 record and could be the first ever NCAA champion for Rutgers; missed the entire 2017-18 season due to injury), (2) Micah Jordan (Ohio State Senior) and (3) Mitch Finesilver (Princeton Junior).

157 pounds — (1) Jason Nolf (Penn State Senior) (23-0), (2) Tyler Berger (Nebraska Senior) and Ryan Deakin (Northwestern Sophomore).

165 pounds — (1) Vincenzo Joseph (Penn State Junior) (21-0), (2) Alex Marinelli (Iowa Sophomore) and (3) Evan Wick (Wisconsin Sophomore).

174 pounds — (1) Mark Hall (Penn State Junior) (23-0), (2) Myles Amine (Michigan Junior) and (3) Daniel Lewis (Missouri Senior).  Hall was the runner-up in last year’s NCAA championship.

184 pounds — (1) Myles Martin (Ohio State Senior) (17-0), (2) Shakur Rasheed (Penn State Senior) and (3) Ryan Preisch (Lehigh Senior).  Martin was the runner-up in last year’s NCAA championship.

197 pounds — (1) Bo Nickal (Penn State Senior) (22-0), (2) Kollin Moore (Ohio State Junior) and (3) Ben Honis (Cornell Senior).  Moore was one of two # 1 seeded wrestlers who did not make it to last year’s finals.

285 pounds — (1) Gable Steveson (Minnesota Freshman) (28-0; a rare undefeated freshman), (2) Derek White (Oklahoma State Senior) and (3) Anthony Cassar (Penn State Senior).

As of Feb. 28, 2019, Nolf (157) and Nickal (197) are battling for Penn States’s all-time falls record.  Nolf has 58 and Nickal has 56.  This year, Nolf is 23-0 with 13 pins, three technical falls and four major decisions.  Nickal is 22-0 with 15 pins, two technical falls and four major decisions. Nolf has a 71-2 takedown record while Nickal is 57-1.

Nickal leads the NCAA as “Most Dominant Wrestler” with a statistic of 5.41.  Nolf is second at 5.26 and Vincenzo Joseph (165) of Penn State is third at 5.0.

Steveson (285) was a four-time Minnesota state high school champion with a record of 210-3.  The Golden Gopher standout said he wants to be a four-time NCCA champion and the 2020 Olympics are on his mind.  His closest matches this years have been to # 22 Youssif Hemida of Maryland (7-4), # 21 Conan Jennings of Northwestern (9-5), # 8 Jordan Wood of Lehigh (9-4) and # 16 Tanner Hall of Arizona State (3-1).

The 2019 NCAA Division 1 Wrestling Championship will be held at PPG Paints Arena at Pittsburgh from March 21-23, 2019.  The championship round will begin at 7 p.m. Eastern Time and will be broadcast by ESPN.


Photo Credit: Rutgers University


Penn State is favored to win the 2019 NCAA wrestling championship

February 25, 2019


Photo Credit: Pittsburgh Penquins

Penn State is favored to win the 2019 NCAA wrestling championship which will take place from March 21-23, 2019 at PPG Paints Arena at Pittsburgh.  Penn State, coached by Cael Sanderson, has won the title every years since 2011 except for in 2015 when the Ohio State team coached by Tom Ryan was the champion.

The current rankings are (1) Penn State with a 13-0 season record, (2) Oklahoma State at 14-0, (3) Iowa at 14-0, (4) Michigan at 12-1, (5) Missouri at 15-1, (6) Ohio State at 11-2, (7) Nebraska at 11-5, (8) Minnesota at 14-3, (9) Cornell at 13-2 and (10) North Carolina State at 15-3.

Currently, the Top 10 ranked wrestlers are (1) senior Bo Nickal, 197 pounds, Penn State, (2) senior Jason Nolf, 157 pounds, Penn State, (3) junior Vincenzo Joseph, 165 pounds, Penn State, (4) Alex Marinelli, 165 pounds, Iowa, (5) Yianni Diakomihalis, 141 pounds, Cornell, (6) Spencer Lee, 125 pounds, Iowa, (7) Daniel Lewis, 174 pounds, Missouri, (8) Anthony Ashnault, 149 pounds, Rutgers, (9) Nicholas Piccininni, 125 pounds, Oklahoma State and (10) Gable Steveson, 285 pounds, Minnesota.  The rankings may change due to Piccininni’s pin today of Lee at 125 pounds.

Nickal, Nolf and Joseph of Penn State all won individual championships last year. So far this year, Nickal has won 12 matches by fall, Nolf has won 11 matches by fall and Joseph has won 10 matches by fall.  The other returning NCAA champions are Lee of Iowa and Diakomihalis of Cornell.

In dual meets, with Top 10 teams in boldface, the latest results are:

Feb. 20, 2019 — The Citadel 20, Davidson 18.

Feb. 21, 2019 — Northern Iowa 22, Iowa State 13; Brown 25, Harvard 12

Feb. 22, 2019 — Ohio State 25, Cornell 9; North Carolina State 17, Virginia Tech 16; North Carolina 23, Duke 16; Pittsburgh 20, Virginia 15; Rutgers 24, Maryland 12; Oklahoma 30, South Dakota State 6; Princeton 27, Drexel 13; Arizona State 32, Cal Poly 7; Michigan State 24, Central Michigan 15; American 24, Old Dominion 14; Buffalo 23, Northern Illinois 14; Oregon State 33, Cal Baptist 7; Clarion 18, Edinboro 15; George Mason 28, Hofstra 9; Gardner-Webb 22, Davidson 18

Feb. 23, 2019 — Nebraska 31, Stanford 9; Northwestern 36, SIUE 7; Lock Haven 31, Appalachian State 7; Army 22, Navy 10; Ohio 31, Gardner-Webb 15; Columbia 20, Bucknell 16; CSU Bakersfield 38, Cal Baptist 6; Binghamton 23, Cleveland State 13; Appalachian State 32, Bloomsburg 6; Brown 38, Sacred Heart 3; Columbia 30, Bloomsburg 9; VMI 23, The Citadel 22; Binghamton 22, Kent State 15

Feb. 24, 2019 — Bucknell 35, Bloomsburg 7; Campbell 42, Davidson -1; Old Dominion 23, Drexel 12; Maryland 22, Rider 16; Wisconsin 30, SIUE 15; Central Michigan 20, Purdue 15; Indiana 32, Chattanooga 0; Lehigh 32, Penn 6; Michigan 37, Clarion 6; Penn State 47, Buffalo 3; Oklahoma 20, North Dakota State 18; Oklahoma State 27, Iowa 12.

The Oklahoma State vs. Iowa match involved two undefeated teams, 18 combined ranked wrestlers and 57 combined national titles throughout history. Oklahoma State got pins by Nick Piccininni and Chandler Rogers.  Piccininni pinned Spencer Lee, the defending national champion. Rogers pinned Mitch Bowman. The Cowboys ended their season at 15-0 and extended their all-time record against the Hawkeyes to 29-22-2.

Oklahoma State is the winningest wrestling team in NCAA history and holds 34 national titles to Iowa’s 23.  Before the match, No. 2 Oklahoma State’s biggest challenge came from No. 5 Missouri when the Cowboys pulled off a 19-15 victory.


Penn State won the NCAA wrestling championship for the seventh time in eight years and had four individual champions

March 24, 2018


Photo Credit: Aaron Doster — USA Today

Penn State narrowly beat Ohio State, 141.5 to 134.5, to win the 2018 NCAA Wrestling Championship on March 17, 2018 at Cleveland.  Penn State, coached by Cael Sanderson, had four individual champions (Zain Retherford, Jason Nolf, Vincenzo Joseph and Bo Nickal), one runner-up, one fifth place finisher and two seventh place finishers.

“I’m obviously very proud of these guys,” Sanderson said. “I think they put forth a tremendous effort throughout the whole year. . . . And just proud of them and happy for them, more than anything.”

Ohio State had one individual champion (Kyle Snyder), one runner-up, two third and fourth place finishers and one fifth place and sixth place finisher.

Iowa placed third with 97 points.  Michigan and North Carolina State tied for fourth with 80 points.  Iowa and North Carolina State each had two individual champions (Spencer Lee and Michael Macchiavello).  Michigan had two runner-ups.  Other individual champions came from Cornell, Arizona State and South Dakota State (Yianni Diakomihalis, Zahid Valencia and Seth Gross).

Penn State’s Retherford and Ohio State’s Snyder became three-time national champions.  Penn State’s Nickal won his second straight title.  Iowa’s Lee and Cornell’s Diakomihalis became the first pair of freshmen to win titles in the same tournament since 1947.

Oklahoma State, with 34 NCAA team titles, finished tied for 13th, the second lowest in head coach John Smith’s 27 seasons.  Fellow Big 12 members Iowa State and Oklahoma, who have a combined 15 NCAA titles between them, finished 45th and 56th, respectively, both program lows.

All four of Penn State’s national champions will be eligible to wrestle in the 2019 national tournament.

125 Pounds — No. 3 seed Spencer Lee of Iowa beat No. 4 seed Nick Suriano of Rutgers in a 5-1 decision.  Pretournament, Lee was 22-2 and Suriano was 25-1.  No. 1 seed Darian Cruz of Lehigh lost 2-0 to Suriano in the semi-finals.  Lee is a true freshman.  Nathan Tomasello of Ohio State beat Ethan Lizak of Minnesota, 8-6, for third place.  Cruz beat Sebastian Rivera of Northwestern, 7-4, for fifth place.  Cruz, 30-2 going into the tournament, was one of two No. 1 seeds who did not wrestle in the finals.

133 Pounds — No. 1 seed Seth Gross of South Dakota State University beat No. 2 seed Stevan Micic of Michigan in a 13-8 decision. Gross was 29-1 and Micic was 26-3 before the tournament started.  Gross was a runner-up in 2017.  Tariq Wilson of North Carolina State beat Luke Pletcher of Ohio State, 17-8, for third place.

141 Pounds — No 3 seed Yianni Diakomihalis of Cornell beat No. 1 seed Bryce Meredith of Wyoming in a 7-4 decision.  Pretournament, Diakomihalis was 34-1 and Meredith was 33-2.  Diakomihalis is a true freshman.  Joey McKenna of Ohio State beat Jaydin Eierman of Missouri, 7-2, for third place.

149 Pounds — No. 1 seed Zain Retherford of Penn State beat No. 15 seed Ronald Perry of Lock Haven in a 6-2 decision.  Retherford was 31-0 and Perry was 32-4 before the start of the tournament.  Retherford finished his career with 94 straight wins and three national titles.  Matthew Kolodzik of Princeton beat Troy Heilmann of North Carolina, 3-2, for third place.  Retherford was last year’s Dan Hodge Trophy winner.  The trophy has been presented since 1995 and is awarded to the most outstanding college wrestler of the year.  This year’s finalists are Retherford, Bo Nickal of Penn State, Seth Gross of South Dakota State and Zahid Valencia of Arizona State.  Penn State’s coach, Cael Sanderson, who is considered to be the greatest NCAA wrestler of all time, won the trophy in 2000, 2001 and 2002 when he wrestled for Iowa State.

157 Pounds — No. 3 seed Jason Nolf of Penn State beat No. 1 seed Hayden Hidlay of North Carolina State in a 6-2 decision.  Pretournament, Nolf and Hidlay were each 26-1.  Tyler Berger of Nebraska took third place over Michael Kemerer of Iowa after Kemerer was injured.

165 Pounds — No. 3 seed Vincenzo Joseph of Penn State beat No. 1 seed Isaiah Martinez of Illinois in a 6-1 decision.  Joseph was 25-2 and Martinez was 18-1 before the tournament started.  It was the second year in a row that Joseph beat Martinez in the finals.  Martinez won the championship as a freshman and sophomore and had only three career losses.  Evan Wick of Wisconsin pinned Chance Marsteller of Lock Haven for third place.

174 Pounds — No. 1 seed Zahid Valencia of Arizona State beat No. 2 seed Mark Hall of Penn State in an 8-2 decision.  Valencia was 32-0 and Hall was 32-1 pretournament.  Myles Amine of Mchigan beat Daniel Lewis of Missouri, 4-2, for third place.

184 Pounds — No. 1 seed Bo Nickal of Penn State beat No. 2 seed Myles Martin of Ohio State with a fall at 2:30.  Nickal was 31-0 and Martin was 31-3 before the start of the tournament.  Nickal lost to Martin in the 2016 finals. Emory Parker of Illinois beat Taylor Venz of Nebraska, 8-1, for third place.

197 Pounds — No. 4 seed Michael Macchiavello of North Carolina State beat No. 3 seed Jared Haught of Virginia Tech in a 3-1 decision. (Macchiavello needed a takedown in the final 16 seconds to win.)  Pretournament, Macchiavello was 22-3 and Haught was 30-3.  No. 1 seed Kollin Moore of Ohio State lost to Kyle Conel of Kent State by a fall in the quarter finals.  Conel also beat Moore a second time, 5-3, to finish third.  Moore, 27-4 before the start of the tournament, was one of two No. 1 seeds who did not wrestle in the finals.

285 Pounds — No. 1 seed Kyle Snyder of Ohio State beat No. 2 seed Adam Coon of Michigan in a 3-2 decision.  Snyder was 17-1 and Coon was 29-2 going into the tournament.  Snyder won the Olympic Gold Medal in 2016 and is also a world champion.  During the regular season, Coon beat Snyder in a dual meet and Snyder won the Big Ten final.   Snyder won two other national titles and was runner-up one year.  Amar Dhesi of Oregon State pinned Jacob Kasper of Duke for third place.

The Cleveland tournament broke NCAA records for attendance with a six-session total of 113,740 including a championship round attendance of 19,776, which was a new record.

The 2019 championships will be held at Pittsburgh.


Photo Credit: Mike Carter — USA Today


Penn State wins sixth title in seven years; five Nittany Lions win individual titles

March 19, 2017




Penn State won its sixth national championship in seven years in the NCAA Division I wrestling championship which ended on March 18, 2017 at St. Louis.  Penn State sent five wrestlers to the finals (Zain Retherford at 149, Jason Nolf at 157, Vincenzo Joseph at 165, Mark Hall at 174 and Bo Nickal at 184 pounds). Each wrestler for the Nittany Lions won in the finals.

Zain Retherford was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Wrestler and named the season’s Most Dominant Wrestler. Missouri’s Brian Smith was named Coach of the Year.

Two Olympic medalists — Gold Medal winner Kyle Snyder of Ohio State and Bronze Medal winner J’den Cox of Missouri — each placed first in the championships.

As to Penn State going five-for-five in the championship round, Penn State head coach Cael Sanderson said:

“It’s crazy. Usually, you have somebody lose [in the championship round] or something doesn’t go right and as a competitor your heart is always with the kid that doesn’t reach his goal.  So this is very special.” Source: Clay Sauertieg, Penn State Wrestling closes out NCAA Tournament in style (March 19, 2o017).

125 POUNDS — Darian Cruz (Leigh), the # 4 seed,  dec. Ethan Lizak (Minnesota), the # 6 seed, 6-3.  Thomas Gilman (Iowa), the # 1 seed, placed third.  Cruz’s season record was 31-2.  Cruz had an upset victory over Gilman in the semi-finals, winning 4-2 in overtime.  In overtime, Cruz went ahead on a switch, which was challenged by the Iowa coaching staff.

133 POUNDS — Cory Clark (Iowa), the # 4 seed, dec. Seth Gross (South Dakota State), the # 2 seed, 4-3.  Nathan Tomasello (Ohio State), the # 1 seed, placed third.  Clark’s season record was 20-3.  Clark placed second in the tournament the past two seasons, losing to Code Brewer of Oklahoma in 2o15 and to Nahshon Garrett of Cornell in 2016.  Gross was South Dakota State’s first wrestler to make the finals.

141 POUNDS — Dean Heil (Oklahoma State), the # 1 seed, dec. George DiCamillo (Virginia), the # 6 seed, 6-3.  Kevin Jack (North Carolina State), the # 2 seed, placed third. Heil’s season record was 32-0.  It was Heil’s second NCAA title.

149 POUNDS — Zain Retherford (Penn State), the # 1 seed, tf. Lavion Mayes (Missouri), the # 3 seed, 18-2 (6:43). Brandon Sorensen (Iowa), the # 5 seed, placed third. Retherford’s season record was 28-0.  It was Retherford’s 63rd straight victory and his second consecutive NCAA championship with a perfect season.

157 POUNDS — Jason Nolf (Penn State), the # 1 seed, md. Joey Lavallee (Missouri), a # 3 seed, 14-6.  Michael Kemerer (Iowa), the # 2 seed, placed third. Nolf’s season record was 27-0.  Nolf was second to Isaiah Martinez of Illinois in the NCAA finals last season.

165 POUNDS — Vincenzo Joseph (Penn State), the # 3 seed, pinned Isaiah Martinez (Illinois), the # 1 seed, 5:26.  Logan Massa (Michigan), the # 2 seed, placed third. Joseph’s season record was 22-4.  Joseph prevented Martinez from winning his third straight NCAA championship.

174 POUNDS — Mark Hall (Penn State), the # 5 seed, dec. Bo Jordan (Ohio State), the # 3 seed, 5-2. Zahid Valencia (Arizona State), the # 1 seed, placed third. Hall, a true freshman, had a season record of 31-3.  Jordan had defeated Hall 6-4 in the finals of the Big 10 Championships on March 5, 2017.

184 POUNDS — Bo Nickal (Penn State), the # 2 seed, dec. Gabe Dean (Cornell), the # 1 seed, 4-3.  T.J. Dudley (Nebraska), the # 7 seed, placed third. Nickal’s season record was 26-1.  Dean was attempting to win his third straight NCAA title.  Nickal received individual recognition for his three pins in the tournament.

197 POUNDS — J’den Cox (Missouri), the # 1 seed, dec. Brett Pfarr (Minnesota), the # 2 seed, 8-2.  Kollin Moore (Ohio State), the # 3 seed, placed third. Cox’s season record was 28-0. It was the third consecutive NCAA title for Cox.

285 POUNDS — Kyle Snyder (Ohio State), the # 1 seed, dec. Connor Medbery (Wisconsin), the # 2 seed, 6-3.  Tanner Hall (Arizona State), the # 7 seed, placed third. Snyder season record was 17-0.  It was Snyder’s second straight championship.  In 2016 Snyder defeated Nick Gwiazdowski, who had won two consecutive championships.

The top five teams were Penn State (146.5), Ohio State (110), Oklahoma State (103), Iowa (97) and Missouri (86.5).  Placing sixth through tenth were Virginia Tech (63.5), Minnesota (62.5), Cornell (59.5) and Michigan (47.5).

Penn State is coached by Cael Sanderson, who was undefeated (159-0) during his collegiate career at Iowa State University.  Sanderson won four consecutive NCAA titles (1999-2002).  He was also a Gold Medal winner for the United States in the 2004 Olympics at Athens, Greece.

The 2018 NCAA Division I Wrestling Tournament will be at Cleveland from March 15-17, 2018.  Heil and Snyder will have a chance to win their third titles.