Last Updated 7:45 PM, March 25, 2022

Penn State wins the 2022 NCAA wrestling team title

Steveson, Diakomihalis, and Penn State shine bright at the wrestling championships
2:05 am, March 20, 2022

Penn State wins the 2022 NCAA wrestling team title

Penn State's Roman Bravo-Young

DETROIT — Behind five national champions, Penn State wrestling is back to its winning ways as a team, clinching the 2022 team title. Penn State officially locked up the top spot in the tournament halfway through Saturday morning’s medal matches, but the championship performances from Roman Bravo-Young, Nick Lee, Carter Starocci, Aaron Brooks and Max Dean on Saturday night added an exclamation mark to the team win. 

Penn State brought nine wrestlers to Detroit for the national championship and put six of those wrestlers on the podium. 

“The guys did a great job, kept their composure, were the aggressors, went out there and got the takedowns. They were themselves. These big moments obviously when in the team race is on the line, that's a lot, and that's something our guys deal with," head coach Cael Sanderson said after the semifinal round on Friday night. 

Just like last year, Roman Bravo-Young set the momentum for Penn State, beating Daton Fix for the second NCAA finals in a row and building up his teammate, Nick Lee, for success. Lee followed with a comfortable win over No. 15 Kizhan Clarke of North Carolina despite giving up the first takedown. The Nittany Lion champion wrestled in control the entire match and wore down his opponent for the victory. Carter Starocci and Aaron Brooks added championship performances with wins over 2019 NCAA champion Mekhi Lewis and 2022 Big Ten champ Myles Amine, respectively.

Max Dean, the transfer from Cornell, became the fifth NCAA title winner for the program after winning a close match against Iowa's Jacob Warner, and his presence in this upperweight lineup only adds firepower to the already dominant Nittany Lion team. 

"I remember thinking before the season even started, 'If I don't start, if I don't ever win a match, I'm just lucky to be here,' because their perspective on life. I think that's why they are so successful," Dean said, reflecting on his experience at Penn State. "In situations when it's uncomfortable out here, we're competing, it's 1-1, your dreams are on the line, but you're so focused because you have values. That's Cael Sanderson." 

The positive culture within this program also produced an All-Americans in Greg Kerkvliet at heavyweight, who finished fourth after medically forfeiting his bronze medal match. 

In the five NCAA finals matches that Penn State didn't win, Nick Suriano claimed 125 pounds for his second title, Yianni Diakomihalis won a third title with a victory at 149 pounds, Ryan Deakin took home gold at 157 pounds, Keegan O'Toole of Missouri claim top honors at 165 pounds and Gable Steveson earned his second heavyweight crown.

11:10 pm, March 9, 2022




DI wrestling: 2022 selection show
1:52 am, March 20, 2022

285 pounds: No. 1 Gable Steveson beats No. 2 Cohlton Schultz

THIRD PERIOD: Schultz chooses down to start the third, and he escapes. It's 5-2 Steveson. One minute left. One more minute in the collegiate career of Gable Steveson. Schultz is doing an excellent job slowing down the Olympian, but he has work to do to close this match. Thirty seconds. Twenty seconds. Ten seconds. The crowd starts to rise. Gable Steveson is your 2022 NCAA Olympic heavyweight champion with a 6-2 decision! 

"As I said yesterday if you score points you're going to win," Steveson said in the press conference after his win. "And today just shooting the best shots I possibly could on a bigger body like Cohlton Schultz, who is a Greco specialist and who knows how to roll people up in 30 seconds to a minute. Just having that confidence to do that on a big stage is a lot. But I feel like I'm built for this and I'm built for the big stage." 

SECOND PERIOD: Steveson starts down to begin the second period, and he picks up a quick escape to expand his lead 5-1. Schultz looks for a takedown, but Steveson fends him off. The crowd is quiet, mostly, just soaking up this match. Neither wrestler is doing anything particularly wild or crazy here. Steveson holds the 5-1 lead heading into the third period. 

FIRST PERIOD: Gable Steveson isn't wasting any time, as he picks up the first takedown immediately off the whistle. The Gopher lets up Schultz, but he notches one more takedown before the end of the period to give himself a 4-1 lead, following another Schultz escape. Ten seconds left. 

Rewatch the whole match below:

Gable Steveson vs. Cohlton Schultz: 2022 NCAA wrestling championship final (285 lb.)
1:36 am, March 20, 2022

197 pounds: No. 1 Max Dean takes down No. 6 Jacob Warner

THIRD PERIOD: Dean escapes to tie the score 1-1 with 90 seconds remaining. Riding time is not a factor. Takedown Dean! Warner is going to need something special here in the last 30 seconds if he wants to stay in this. Dean works on top. Can he ride out Warner? Twenty seconds. The Penn State fans are feeling that they could have a fifth champ. Ten seconds. Warner is out. He shoots until the very end, but Warner can't find the takedown. Max Dean becomes Penn State's fifth national champion of the night with 3-2 win! 

"I felt confident that he wasn't going to score off anything except maybe if I took a bad shot," Dean said in the press conference after his win over Warner. "First time I wrestled him, I don't get too much into the game plan; I'm not going to tip my hand too much, but he took a bad shot, and I scored on him. That's what happened." 

SECOND PERIOD: The last time these two wrestlers competed, Warner went into the third with a lead, only to give up back points in the final minute to drop the match. He's out to a 1-0 lead now after a quick escape. That escape proved to be the only point of the period, and Warner will hold on to his 1-0 lead heading into the second and work to rideout Dean. 

FIRST PERIOD: Max Dean has to have all of the momentum in the world right now, as four of his teammates have just won team titles and his program clinched another team title. Warner, though, is wrestling for Iowa pride. He wants to put a Hawkeye on top of the podium. Completely scoreless after one period. 

1:16 am, March 20, 2022

184 pounds: No. 2 Aaron Brooks avenges his Big Ten loss to No. 1 Myles Amine

THIRD PERIOD: There's another takedown for the 2021 champ! With just over 90 seconds to go in the match, Amine is back on the bottom and will work to escape to keep himself in this match. Amine escapes, but with 30 seconds to go in the match, Brooks is in on another shot. These two Big Ten champs are scrambling, and Amine gets the two points, but it's too little, too late for Michigan as Penn State's Aaron Brooks wins another title 5-3. 

"Whenever I was preparing for the Big Ten, it was a really bad week for me, just doing a lot of things, going backwards," Brooks said, reflecting on his win and his season in the press conference following his title. "After that loss with Amine, I think that was God calling me. He woke me up. I went home. Had two weeks to prepare, talked to God. And I know he wanted to use me. So I had to make sure I was in alignment with him, make sure I was walking, living the right way...I'm blessed with this opportunity, these gifts. They're not mine. He gives them to me to bring glory to him and get more disciples." 

SECOND PERIOD: Amine chooses down to start the second period, and Brooks rides him out for the first minute of the period. The ride continues. Brooks mat returns Amine and generates a stall call against the Wolverine. This is not how Amine wanted this match to go. Ten seconds. That's a full second-period rideout for Brooks, and the Penn State fan base goes nuts. 

FIRST PERIOD: It's the Big Ten finals rematch the world has been waiting for since early March. Amine topped Brooks in their last meeting to help lift Michigan to the conference title. This time, Penn State has the team title locked up, but these two will still battle for individual glory. The "Let's Go Myles" chants start early, but Brooks still leads the aggressor in this match with the first shot. Amine holds him off. As Jason Bryant reads Amine's accomplishments out over the loudspeaker, the crowd give a big roar as Amine's bronze medal performance from Tokyo is announced. Amine is in on a shot, but Brooks counters, and he's on the board first. One minute to go. Brooks racks up riding time, but Amine is actively working to escape, as his coaches shout "wrestle!" from the corner. Brooks will ride out the period and start the second with a 2-0 lead. 

12:52 am, March 20, 2022

174 pounds: No. 1 Carter Starocci rides out No. 2 Mekhi Lewis in OT

TIE-BREAKERS: Starocci starts down to begin the first tie-breaker. He's out after six seconds. He's put himself in an ideal position. Lewis goes down next. He'll need to escape fast. Six seconds pass. Reset. Starocci rides him to the edge. Fifteen seconds. Lewis needs an escape and a takedown or a reversal. "Car-ter" chants fill the arena. Lewis escapes. He races around the mat, but Starocci holds him off. The Nittany Lion is a national champion with a 6-5 win in TB-1. 

"I wrestled this match a million times in my head before," Starocci said in the press conference after his win. "I mean, it's not my first rodeo. I've been here before. Trust my faith in God. I have his presence, his gifts, his love. That's really all I really need. And just go out there, perform and have fun."

OVERTIME: Scoreless so far. One minute to go. Twenty seconds. Ten seconds. Starocci in on a shot, but time expires. 

THIRD PERIOD: We're all tied up 2-2, but Lewis will choose down to start the period, and he escapes. He leads 3-2. Starocci is in on a shot, and he converts. The Nittany Lion takes the 4-3 lead with 1:20 to go in the period. Starocci works to ride Lewis. One minute remain. An escape would tie it up. He does it! An escape from Lewis ties the match, and the crowd is into this exciting bout! Forty seconds remain. Starocci with a double-leg attempt, but time ticks down. Let's go to overtime! 

SECOND PERIOD: Starocci escapes, and he's on the board, but Lewis responds with a shot, nearly taking down the Nittany Lion. Virginia Tech will challenge the call. That's two! The refs award Lewis the takedown, and he leads 2-1 with 98 seconds remaining in the second period. He'll now work to ride Starocci, and he's strength is on full display as he goes to work on top. Starocci escapes. The match is all tied up at 2-2, and riding time is not a factor as Lewis racked up just 41 seconds in that sequence. 

FIRST PERIOD: 2019 NCAA champion Mekhi Lewis takes the first shot of the match, but the refs call potentially dangerous, and the wrestlers are back to the middle. Scoreless after the first two minutes. This is match between two savvy champions, and they aren't making any mistakes here in the first period. Twenty seconds remaining. Stalemate. Starocci in on a shot, but time ticks down in the first period, and it's 0-0 heading into the second. 

12:36 am, March 20, 2022

165 pounds: No. 2 Keegan O'Toole wins his first NCAA title

THIRD PERIOD: Griffith chooses neutral to start the third period, and Missouri likes that choice, as it puts O'Toole in an equal position to win the match from the feet. O'Toole is in on a shot, and he scores. The Tiger leads 6-4, but Griffith escapes, making the score 6-5 with 30 seconds to go. Missouri wanted a takedown on that last shot, but the refs ruled no call. Shot O'Toole. Neutral. Ten seconds. Five seconds. Keegan O'Toole is a 2022 NCAA Champion with a 6-5 win! 

"Like I said before in these other interviews, I was prepared to go to die. Every time I stepped out on that dang mat I was ready to throw down no matter what the circumstances were," O'Toole said in the press conference following his match. "Shane's a great competitor. He won the weight class last year. I knew it didn't matter how I was feeling or what the circumstances were, I was going to have to find a way." 

SECOND PERIOD: O'Toole chooses down to start the period, and he picks up the escape, tying the score. Griffith is back on the attack though, and he adds two more points to his total. Stalemate. O'Toole with the reversal, and we're all tied up at 4-4. Riding time is not a factor as O'Toole works down Griffith's riding time from earlier in the match. The Tiger ends the period on top, and we'll go into the third period tied up. 

FIRST PERIOD: Shane Griffith was in this position last year as well, but in the 2021 finals, Griffith sported a different singlet. After Stanford announced plans to cut the program, Griffith and his Cardinal teammates wore black singlets without that iconic Stanford logo to protest that decision. As Jason Bryant recalls this story to the crowd, they reward Griffith, his 2021 title and the decision to save Stanford wrestling with a loud cheer. 

Griffith scores first, and he nearly has O'Toole in danger, but the Tiger sophomore scrambles out and just gives up the two. Missouri brought quite the cheer squad here tonight, and "Let's go Keegan" chants fill the left side of the arena. O'Toole escapes, and he trails 2-1 to Griffith with 20 seconds left in the first period. Griffith will carry his 2-1 lead into the second period. 

12:12 am, March 20, 2022

157 pounds: Ryan Deakin tops Quincy Monday

THIRD PERIOD: Monday chooses neutral to start the third period, an interesting choice, but one clearly made with intention. The Tiger will look to win this on takedowns. Let's scramble! Deakin is awarded two swipes, but we're still rolling! The Wildcat adds four more points to his total. He leads 8-2 with 30 seconds to go. Fifteen seconds. Deakin will look to ride out the period. And he does! Ryan Deakin is your 2022 NCAA champion at 157 pounds! 

SECOND PERIOD: Deakin escapes to start the second period, but Monday continues to drive the pace. He's on a mission to be Princeton's first NCAA champion since 1951, but Deakin holds off his attacks. The Wildcat is starting to find his rhythm, but the period ends tied 2-2. 

FIRST PERIOD: Quincy Monday is on the board first with a takedown two minutes into the first period. Deakin responds with an escape, and the wrestlers are back on their feet. Ten seconds remain in the period. Monday will enter the second period with the lead. 

11:56 pm, March 19, 2022

149 pounds: No. 1 Yianni Diakomihalis beats No. 10 Ridge Lovett for his third NCAA title

THIRD PERIOD: Ridge Lovett chooses down to start the third period and escapes, so now he only trails 9-4, but Diakomihalis is quick with another takedown to extend his lead 11-4. Now the name of the game will be bonus points. Lovett escapes, adding a point to his total and making the score 11-5. One minute remaining. The "Let's go Yianni" cheer is back as the Cornell fans feel his third title inching closer. Twenty seconds. Ten seconds. Yianni Diakomihalis is a THREE-TIME NCAA champion!

"For me it's pursuit of improvement and development," Diakomihalis said after his third title. "When you're looking to improve and constantly growing, it can seem like you're staying this much ahead."

SECOND PERIOD: Diakomihalis chooses down to start the second period, as the Cornell fanbase launches into a "Let's go Yianni" cheer. Lovett is riding tough, and he'll need some points here to slow down Diakomihalis' momentum after the Big Red scored twice in first period. Diakomihalis escapes and goes back on the attack for another takedown. He now leads 7-2 with 45 seconds to go in the second period following Lovett's escape. That's two more for Diakomihalis and an escape for Lovett. The Big Red defending champ will enter the third ahead 9-3. 

FIRST PERIOD: An early takedown for Yianni Diakomihalis, but Ridge Lovett escapes. The Cornhusker trails two-time NCAA champion 2-1 with 1:44 to go in the first period. Add another takedown to the scoreboard for Diakomihalis as the Cornell junior ends the period on top with a 4-1 lead. 

11:40 pm, March 19, 2022

141 pounds: No. 1 Nick Lee outscores No. 15 Kizhan Clarke

THIRD PERIOD: Clarke chooses neutral to start the third — he decided bottom might not be the best choice after Lee rode him about most of the second period. Lee earns another takedown, so he now leads 9-2 with riding time. The Nittany Lion is looking at bonus here in the championship bout. Lee's riding time hits four minutes, and he's still wrestling strong in that top position. Time ticks down. Ten seconds. Five seconds. Nick Lee is a two-time NCAA champion at 141 pounds by way of a 10-3 win! 

"I'm just so grateful. It doesn't feel like me winning, I feel like the whole community, our staff, our fans, my family -- I just feel like we we're all [winning]," Nick Lee said in the press conference following his win. "The best part is I get to follow RBY again, so we wrestle on the same mat the whole tournament. We've got a pretty good record. That's what we've got." 

SECOND PERIOD: Lee chooses down to start the second period. He escapes. Takedown Nick Lee. He extends his lead 6-2 with 1:24 of riding time. Clarke is hit with stalling again, adding to Lee's point total. The Nittany Lion moves into the third period with a 7-2 lead. 

FIRST PERIOD: Kizhan Clarke is on the board first with a takedown. What a start for the Tar Heel! Nick Lee escapes, but he's trailing Clarke 2-1. Blood time. Lee is in on a shot, and he finishes for two points, giving him the 3-2 lead against Clarke. Ninety seconds to go in the first period. Lee is looking to turn Clarke, but the Tar Heel is too strong and sturdy. Lee will settle for the ride instead. Stalemate. Back to the middle. The Penn State crowd cheers as Lee's riding time ticks up over a minute. Clarke is hit with stalling. He's in a tough spot here, as Lee is a machine in the top position. Lee will hold the 3-2 lead heading into the second period. 

11:24 pm, March 19, 2022

133 pounds: No. 1 Roman Bravo-Young outscores No. 2 Daton Fix

THIRD PERIOD: Roman Bravo-Young chooses down to start the third period, and he escapes. Bravo-Young is back in the lead and on the offense. Let's scramble! The ref calls stalemate, the wresters reset. One minute left. Bravo-Young takes another shot, but Fix is so tough. Stalemate. Forty-three seconds to go. Thirty seconds. Lots of handfighting between these two guys as time ticks down. Fifteen seconds. Fix needs a takedown to avoid losing in the national finals for the third year in a row. Bravo-Young holds on! Penn State has a two-time NCAA champion in Roman Bravo-Young after his 3-2 win! 

"It means everything," Bravo-Young said in the press conference following his win. "[I'm] living my dream every day. I never thought, looking back, where I was a kid growing up in Tucson, Arizona, I never thought I'd be in this position, wrestling in front of my family in a pretty much sold-out arena. [I] never thought I'd be a national champ yet a two time champ. I'm excited, and I'm going to celebrate this for a while." 

SECOND PERIOD: Fix chooses bottom to start the second period, but Bravo-Young sends a message with a major mat return. Fix overcomes that power and escapes, and he's tied the score. And woah — almost a takedown from Fix! Back to the center. That will end the period. Tied 2-2. 

FIRST PERIOD: Lots of action early at this weight, but it's Roman Bravo-Young on the board first. Bravo-Young's ability to wrestle each of his opponents in a different way just demonstrates how smart he is on the mat. The Nittany Lion defending champ just needed one takedown against Austin DeSanto in the semifinals, and he notched that takedown in the final period, but here, against Fix, he's on his offense earlier. He wants another title. Fix escapes, and we'll move into the second period 2-1 with the Nittany Lion in the lead. 

10:59 pm, March 19, 2022

125 pounds: No. 1 Nick Suriano takes down Pat Glory

THIRD PERIOD: It's time for Glory to go to work on top. He trails 4-0, and Suriano also has 1:31 of riding time. Glory wants a turn, and Princeton wants a stall call against Suriano. The Wolverine is indeed hit with stalling again, giving Glory a point. Glory trails 4-1 with one minute to go, but the Tiger lightweight has effectively worn down Suriano's riding time. Suriano is hit with his third caution, and Princeton picks up another point. It's now 4-2 Suriano. One minute to go, and Glory is looking for backpoints again. He has Suriano in trouble, but Suriano fights back to his stomach. Suriano is hit with stalling a third time. That's another point for Glory. Suriano escapes. He leads 5-3. Suriano wins the 2022 NCAA title! 

"That guy wrestled me tough, he had nothing to lose," Suriano said in the press conference following the match when asked about his match. "[I've] got a lot of respect for Pat Glory..but I was so locked in that I dominated and won the match." 

SECOND PERIOD: Suriano chooses down to start the period, as "Let's go Nick" chants come from the Michigan side of the arena. Suriano is back on top after a reveral, and he takes a 4-0 lead with one minute to go in the second period. Princeton wants a stall call against Suriano. Emotions are high. BIG mat return from Suriano as he ticks up the riding time. Forty-seven seconds to go in the second period. There's the stall call against Suriano. Fourteen seconds left in the period. Suriano rides out Glory for the second period, but we're taking a quick break as Glory collects himself following what appears to be a tweak to his arm. 

FIRST PERIOD: It's two New Jersey natives here in this first final as Nick Suriano and Patrick Glory meet in the center. Glory, a first-time finalist but two-time placewinner, earned his spot in this final with a win over Vito Arujua in the semifinals. Suriano is here by way of a win over Brandon Courtney in the semifinals. This marks his third finals appearance in his career. 

"Glory" chants fill the arena — credit to Princeton. Despite this tournament being in Michigan and Suriano representing the Wolverines, Princeton traveled, and they're here to support their guy. 

Suriano is on the board first with a takedown in the final seconds of the first period. Glory works to escape, but Suriano ends the period on top with a 2-0 lead. 

4:51 pm, March 20, 2022

Meet the 2022 NCAA All-Americans

Under the bright lights of Little Caesars Arena, 80 athletes fought their way on to the podium at the 2022 NCAA wrestling championships. This is an honor they will hold for the rest of their lives, and it's a distinction that puts them in elite company.

Here's how the 2022 placewinners earned their spot, along with updated final placements

10:52 pm, March 19, 2022

Jared Franek wins the Elite 90 Award

North Dakota State's Jared Franek wins the 2022 Elite 90 Award with a 4.0 in Sports Management. Franek is a three-time NCAA qualifier and a two-time Round of 12 finisher. 

The Elite 90 Award recognizes the collegiate athlete at each NCAA championship across all sports and all three divisions with the highest grade point average. The honor celebrates individuals who represent the epitome of the term student-athlete. You can read more about the Elite 90 Award here.

Congratulations Jared on this incredible accomplishment.

5:17 pm, March 8, 2022

2022 NCAA Wrestling tournament schedule

All times in Eastern Time

Thursday March 17 10:30am  12pm
Thursday March 17 5:30pm 7pm
Friday March 18 9:30am 11am
Friday March 18 6:30pm 8pm
Saturday Mach 19 9:30am 11am
Saturday March 19 5:30pm 7pm


Thursday March 17 12pm 3:30 ESPNU
Thursday March 17 7pm 3:30 ESPN
Friday March 18 11am 3:00 ESPNU
Friday March 18 8:00pm 3:00 ESPN
Saturday Mach 19 11am  3:00 ESPNU
Saturday March 19 7pm 3:00 ESPN