Top-ranked Penn State dominates No. 7 Ohio State in Big Ten opener
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- True freshman Zain Retherford sparked Penn State with an upset victory against No.1 Logan Stieber at 141 to lead Penn State to a 31-6 win against No. 7 Ohio State in Rec Hall on Sunday. An SRO sell-out crowd of more than 6,300 watched as head coach Cael Sanderson's team dominated the Buckeyes on the Big Ten Network.
Junior Nico Megaludis, ranked No. 3 at 125, got Penn State off to a hot start, dominating No. 19 Nick Roberts to the tune of a 21-4 technical fall at the 6:54 mark. Red-shirt freshman Jimmy Gulibon, ranked No. 15 at 133, nearly pulled off the upset at 133 but dropped a 3-2 decision to No. 6 Johnni DeJulius on 1:19 in riding time.
That's when true freshman Retherford, who was ranked No. 8 at 141, down previously unbeaten and top-ranked Stieber in sudden victory. Retherford used a second period ride out to build up a riding time edge that sent the bout into extra time and a takedown in the sudden victory period to send the Rec Hall faithful through the roof and put Penn State up 8-3. Retherford's win keeps the young Lion unbeaten on the year with a perfect 11-0 mark.
At 149, red-shirt freshman Zack Beitz posted the most impressive win of his young Lion career, downing No. 19 Ian Paddock 5-3 to put the Lions up 11-3. Senior James Vollrath closed out the first half with an 11-5 decision over Buckeye Randy Languis to send Penn State into the halftime break with a 14-3 lead.
Senior David Taylor, ranked No. 1 at 165, got Penn State started after the halftime break by dominating 20-5 technical fall at the 7:00 mark over Ohio State's Joe Grandominico. Taylor rolled up 5:37 in riding time in the victory. Taylor remained unbeaten on the year, moving to 11-0. Junior Matt Brown, ranked No. 3 at 174, majored Mark Martin 16-4 with 3:39 in time to put the Lions up 23-3. Brown stayed undefeated with the win, moving to 11-0.
Senior Ed Ruth, ranked No. 1 at 184, returned to action for Penn State with a resounding 14-3 major over No. 12 Kenny Courts of Ohio State. Ruth built up 5:09 in riding time, marking the second Lion (joining Taylor) to amass over 5:00 in time. At 197, Lion sophomore Morgan McIntosh, ranked No. 3 nationally, was held out as a precaution and red-shirt freshman Wes Phipps moved up from 184 to take on No. 5 Nick Heflin. Phipps nearly pulled off the upset but the ranked Buckeye countered a Phipps shot late in the final period for a 3-1 win. Junior Jimmy Lawson, ranked No. 12 at 285, closed out the dual a dominating 15-4 major of his own, with over 3:00 in riding time as well.
Penn State improves to 6-0, 1-0 in the Big Ten with the win while Ohio State falls to 4-1, 0-1 in conference action. Sanderson's Lions dominated the dual from start to finish, posting a 34-3 margin in takedowns and tallying up two tech falls and three majors.
Taylor and Ruth continue to climb the Penn State career charts. Taylor is now 111-3 with 44 pins, 16th all-time at Penn State. 104 of his 111 wins is with bonus points as well. He now has 52 dual meet wins, tied for 11th all-time at Penn State. Ruth moves to 113-2 overall, alone in 14th on Penn State's all-time victories list.
The sell-out crowd of 6,380 is Penn State's 14th-straight home sellout, including last weekend's record-setter in the Bryce Jordan Center. Penn State was without the services of No. 7 Andrew Alton at 149 and No. 5 Dylan Alton at 157. The twins are slated for a late December return after off-season surgeries.
The Lions will trek to Iowa City, Iowa, next weekend for a non-conference dual in Carver-Hawkeye Arena against the Iowa Hawkeyes.