No. 13 Penn State Wrestlers Trek to No. 1 Iowa and No. 12 Wisconsin
By: Pat Donghia
Jan. 27, 2010
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -
No. 13 Penn State (9-4-1, 1-1 Big Ten) continues Big Ten action this weekend, once again hitting the road for two rugged duals. The Nittany Lions visit No. 1 Iowa (16-0, 2-0 Big Ten) on Friday, Jan. 29, for an 8 p.m. (Eastern) dual and then trek to Madison to face No. 12 Wisconsin (*5-6, 1-0 Big Ten) on Sunday, Jan. 31, at 2 p.m. (Eastern). Wisconsin is at Minnesota on Friday.
Head coach Cael Sanderson's squad is coming off a split weekend, downing No. 19 Illinois 24-11 on Friday night before dropping a hard-fought 21-14 decision at No. 3 Ohio State on Sunday. Nearly 5,000 fans packed Rec Hall last Friday to see Sanderson's Big Ten dual meet coaching debut and were awarded with a potent Lion victory, sparked senior Adam Lynch's pin of No. 11 Ryan Prater at 141. Sunday, the Nittany Lions visited Columbus where 3,000 fans saw the Buckeyes win six of ten bouts to claim the dual victory.
A trio of All-Americans continues to lead the Nittany Lions. Seniors Cyler Sanderson and Dan Vallimont and sophomore Frank Molinaro anchor the middle portion of Penn State's line-up. Sanderson is ranked No. 5 at 157 and sports a 21-2 overall record while Vallimont is No. 8 at 165 and is 19-4 overall. Molinaro is ranked No. 5 at 149 and has a team-best 22-2 record. In addition to that trio, three other Nittany Lions are ranked. Sophomore Cameron Wade is ranked No. 11 at heavyweight and sports a 14-5 record. Wade is coming off a solid 2-0 week. Junior Brad Pataky is ranked No. 12 at 125 and is 19-5 overall. Like Wade, Pataky went 2-0 last weekend. Senior David Erwin is No. 13 at 184 and is 20-6 overall. Erwin took No. 2 John Dergo of Illinois to sudden victory before losing 6-4 and then got a major decision in Penn State's dual at Ohio State on Sunday.
Iowa, the defending national champions, will enter Friday's dual with an undefeated mark, 16-0 overall and 2-0 in Big Ten action. The Hawkeyes feature eight wrestlers ranked in the top 25, led by No. 1 Brent Metcalf at 149. Metcalf, the 2008 national champion and 2009 national runner-up, is 22-0 overall. Featuring a potential starting line-up with seven seniors in it, the veteran Hawkeye line-up also has the services of No. 2 Jay Borschel at 174, No. 4 Matt McDonough at 125, No. 5 Montell Marion is a possible at 141, No. 5 Ryan Morningstar at 165, No. 6 Daniel Dennis at 133, No. 7 Phil Keddy at 184 and No. 9 Dan Erekson at heavyweight.
Wisconsin will enter the weekend with a 5-6 overall record, 1-0 in Big Ten action after defeating Indiana last weekend. The Badgers will travel to Minnesota on Friday night, the same evening Penn State is at Iowa. Wisconsin is led by sophomore Andrew Howe, who is ranked No. 1 at 165. Five other UW grapplers are ranked, including No. 2 Kyle Ruschell at 149, No. 8 Trevor Brandvold at 197, No. 8 Tyler Graff at 133, No. 16 Travis Rutt at 184 and No. 20 Cole Schmitt at 141.
An number of potential premier match-ups loom during the Big Ten road weekend. Molinaro could face No. 1 Metcalf on Friday and No. 2 Ruschell on Sunday while Vallimont looks to tangle with No. 5 Morningstar on Friday and No. 1 Howe on Sunday. Lynch could see No. 5 Marion at Iowa and then face off against No. 20 Schmitt on Sunday while Erwin looks to face-off against No. 7 Keddy on Friday in Iowa City and No. 16 Rutt on Sunday in Madison. Freshman Bryan Pearsall could also see two ranked foes, taking on No. 6 Dennis against the Hawkeyes and No. 8 Graff for the Badgers.
Penn State hosts two duals in Rec Hall next weekend, welcomeing Northwestern on Friday, Feb. 5, for a 7 p.m. dual and Michigan on Sunday, Feb. 7, for a 1 p.m. matinee. Single event tickets for Nittany Lion wrestling cost $8 for adults and $6 for youth. Group sales are available once again for groups of 15 people or more. Group prices are $4 in advance and $5 walk-up. Fans can purchase tickets by calling 1.800.NITTANY between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. on weekdays. All Penn State events will once again air live on Forever Broadcasting's WRSC (1390 AM), 3WZ (95.3 FM) and on GoPSUsports. com as well. The 2009-10 Penn State Wrestling season is presented by The Family Clothesline.
TODAY'S POSSIBLE LINE-UP As of January 20, 2010
#13 PENN STATE NITTANY LIONS (9-4-1, 1-1 Big Ten)
Wt. Name Yr. Hometown/High School 2009-10 Record
125 #12 Brad Pataky Jr. Clearfield, Pa./Clearfield 19-5
133 Bryan Pearsall Fr. Lititz, Pa./Warwick 3-15
141 Adam Lynch Sr. Mifflinburg, Pa./Mifflinburg 6-9
149 #5 Frank Molinaro So. Barnegat, N.J./Southern Regional 22-2
157 #5 Cyler Sanderson Sr. Heber City, Utah/Wasatch 21-2
165 #8 Dan Vallimont Sr. Lake Hopatcong, N.J./Jefferson Twp. 19-4
174 Justin Ortega Fr. Oxford, Pa./Oxford 6-12
184 #13 David Erwin Sr. Urbana, Ohio/St. Paris Graham 20-6
197 Clay Steadman So. McKean, Pa./General McLane 8-8
David Crowell So. Easton, Pa./Nazareth 17-10
285 #11 Cameron Wade So. Twinsburg, Ohio/St. Peter Chanel 14-5
#1 IOWA HAWKEYES (16-0, 2-0 Big Ten)
Wt. Name Yr. Hometown/High School 2009-10 Record
125 #4 Matt McDonough Fr. Marion, Iowa/Linn-Mar 22-0
133 #6 Daniel Dennis Sr. Ingleside, Ill./Grant 10-1
141 Dan LeClere Sr. Coggon, Iowa/North Linn 9-3
OR #5 Montell Marion So. Des Moines, Iowa/Roosevelt 14-2
149 #1 Brent Metcalf Sr. Davison, Mich./Davison 22-0
157 Aaron Janssen Jr. Emmetsburg, Iowa/Emmetsburg 9-4
OR Jake Kerr Jr. Oskaloosa, Iowa/Oskaloosa 6-6
165 #5 Ryan Morningstar Sr. Lisbon, Iowa/Lisbon 17-3
174 #2 Jay Borschel Sr. Marion, Iowa/Linn-Mar 21-0
184 #7 Phil Keddy Sr. Vernal, Utah/Uintah 16-5
197 Luke Lofthouse Jr. Avon, Utah/Mountain Crest 14-11
285 #9 Dan Erekson Sr. Eagle, Idaho/Eagle 1-0
#12 WISCONSIN BADGERS (*5-6, 1-0 Big Ten)
Wt. Name Yr. Hometown
125 Drew Hammen Sr. Random Lake, Wis.
133 #8 Tyler Graff Fr. Loveland, Colo.
141 #20 Cole Schmitt Fr. New Glarus, Wis.
149 #2 Kyle Ruschell Sr. Crittenden, Ky.
157 Greg Burke Jr. Mineral Point, Wis.
165 #1 Andrew Howe So. Cedar Lake, Ind.
174 Jimmy Duffy Fr. Naperville, Ill.
OR Brendan Ard Fr. Wachtung Hills, N.J.
184 #16 Travis Rutt So. New Prague, Minn.
197 #8 Trevor Brandvold Jr. River Falls, Wis.
OR Jackson Hein Fr. Wausau, Wis.
285 Eric Bugenhagen Jr. Franklin, Wis.
* Wisconsin is at Minnesota on Friday, Jan. 29.
Indiv. rankings Intermat/Team rankings NWCA
Tags: Adam Lynch, Brad Pataky, Bryan Pearsall, Cael Sanderson, Cameron Wade, Clay Steadman, Cyler Sanderson, Dan Vallimont, David Crowell, David Erwin, Frank Molinaro, Justin Ortega