Nittany Lions Dominate Hoosiers in Big Ten Opener

| December 18, 2017 | 0 Comments

No. 1 Penn State (5-0, 1-0 B1G) dominated visiting Indiana (6-3, 0-2 B1G) in the Big Ten dual opener for the Nittany Lions.  Head coach Cael Sanderson’s squad won nine of ten bouts to roll to a 44-3 win in front of nearly 6,500 fans in Rec Hall.

A sell-out crowd of 6,425 filled Rec Hall for Penn State’s first home dual since Nov. 12 and was treated la resounding Lion performance, led by junior Jered Cortez (Carol Stream, Ill.) with a big win at 141.  The dual victory was Penn State’s 36th straight dual victory dating back to the end of the 2014-15 season.  The sell-out was Penn State’s 37th straight in Rec Hall and its 40th of 42 including three of five in the Bryce Jordan Center.

The dual began at 125 where Nittany Lion redshirt freshman Devin Schnupp (Lititz, Pa.) dropped a tough 7-2 decision to two-time NCAA qualifier Elijah Oliver, giving the Hoosiers an early 3-0 lead.   Senior Corey Keener (Schuylkill Haven, Pa.), ranked No. 18 at 133, returned to action and dominated Hoosier Garrett Pepple, posting an 11-3 major decision to put Penn State up 4-3.  Junior Jered Cortez (Carol Stream, Ill.) looked strong at 141, downing No. 12 Cole Weaver 6-5 to give the Nittany Lions a 7-3 lead.

Senior Zain Retherford (Benton, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 149, remained unbeaten in B1G duals for his career by pinning IU’s Davey Tunon at the 1:42 mark.  The fall was the seventh this season for Retherford and the 43rd of his career.  Junior Jason Nolf (Yatesboro, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 157, also remained unbeaten in Big Ten action for his career, with a dazzling first period pin, getting the fall at the 1:30 mark.  The pin was Nolf’s eighth in nine matches this season and the 37th of his career.  The veteran duo gave Penn State a 19-3 lead at intermission.

Sophomore Vincenzo Joseph (Pittsburgh, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 165, returned to action for Penn State and picked up a forfeit as Indiana’s Bryce Martin suffered a slight injury preparing for the match but could not compete after weighing in.  Joseph’s win gave Penn State a 25-3 lead.  Sophomore Mark Hall (Apple Valley, Minn.), ranked No. 1 at 174, put on a show with a 17-0 technical fall over IU’s Devin Skatzka, getting the tech fall at the 4:56 mark with two quick four-point turns late in the second period.

Junior Bo Nickal (Allen, Texas), ranked No. 1 at 184, continued his penchant for fast falls, pinning Indiana’s Norman Conley at the 0:42 mark.  It was Nickal’s fifth pin this year, all coming in under 1:00 (and the 30th fall of his career).  Sophomore Anthony Cassar (Rocky Hill, N.J.), ranked No. 9 at 197, put on a takedown show with seven takedowns to roll to a 16-5 major decision with 3:21 in riding time.  Junior Nick Nevills (Clovis, Calif.), ranked No. 3 at 285, closed out the dual with a strong 11-3 major decision over Indiana’s Fletcher Miller.  Nevills’ win made the final score 44-3 in Penn State’s favor.

Penn State dominated the dual, posting a 27-4 takedown advantage.  Eight of Penn State’s nine wins included bonus points and the ninth was a win over a top-12 wrestler. Penn State tallied 17 bonus points off three pins, a forfeit, a tech fall and three majors.  The sellout was the 37th straight in Rec Hall for Penn State and the 40th of 42 including three of five in the Bryce Jordan Center. The Nittany Lions are now 5-0, 1-0 in Big Ten action.  Indiana falls to 6-3, 0-2.

Penn State returns the Southern Scuffle after a year away from the event, looking to win its seventh Scuffle title in as many trips (Penn State won six straight before missing the event last year). The 2018 Southern Scuffle, hosted by UT-Chattanooga, is set for Jan. 1-2 in Chattanooga, Tenn. The Nittany Lions’ next home dual is a Big Ten battle against Purdue in Rec Hall on Friday, Jan. 19, at 7 p.m. With all home dual meets sold out, a limited number of Standing Room Only (SRO) tickets are available to select Rec Hall duals based on availability.  Call 1-800-NITTANY for information or to purchase tickets.

The 2017-18 Penn State wrestling season is sponsored by The Family Clothesline. Penn State Fans are encouraged to follow Penn State wrestling via twitter at @pennstateWREST, on Penn State Wrestling’s Facebook page at and on Instagram at

#2 Penn State 44, Indiana 3

December 17, 2017 – Rec Hall – University Park, Pa.

125: Elijah Oliver IND dec. Devin Schnupp PSU, 7-2                                           0-3

133: #18 Corey Keener PSU maj. dec. Garrett Pepple IND, 11-3                           4-3

141: Jered Cortez PSU dec. #12 Cole Weaver IND, 6-5                                        7-3

149: #1 Zain Retherford PSU pinned Davey Tunon IND, WBF (3:42)                     13-3

157: #1 Jason Nolf PSU pinned Jake Danishek IND, WBF (1:30)                          19-3

165: #1 Vincenzo Joseph PSU win by forfeit                                                       25-3

174: #2 Mark Hall PSU tech fall Devin Skatzka IND, 17-0 (TF; 4:56)                      30-3

184: #1 Bo Nickal PSU pinned Norman Conley IND, WBF (0:42)                           36-3

197: #9 Anthony Cassar PSU maj. dec. Spencer Irick IND, 16-5                           40-3

285: #3 Nick Nevills PSU maj. dec. Fletcher Miller IND, 11-3                                44-3

Attendance: 6,425 (37th straight Rec Hall sellout, 40th of 42 including 3 of 5 in the BJC)

Records: Penn State 5-0, 1-0 B1G; Indiana (6-3, 0-2 B1G)

Up Next for Penn State: Southern Scuffle, Jan. 1-2, 2018, Chattanooga, Tenn.

Category: College Wrestling

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