Any of you who saw the preview knew this could happen.
Penn State wrestling’s 60-dual win streak came to an end on Friday night as the Arizona Sun Devils topped the Nittany Lions 19-18.
Penn State came in banged up and that factor combined with some strong showings in key matches by Arizona State led to the upset.
We started at 125 where Brody Teske struggled to deal with the heavy hands and impressive angles of Brandon Courtney, giving up a major decision to fall behind 4-0
Roman Bravo-Young righted the ship a bit at 133, picking up a 7-6 win over ASU’s Josh Kramer despite giving up the first takedown.
Nick Lee built on that momentum at 141, putting in a Retherfordian performance. He earned an 18-3 tech fall win over Cory Crooks in the second period.
After winning a swing match big at 125, the Sun Devils won another at 149 when Josh Maruca picked up a 5-4 win over Jarod Verkleeren thanks in part to review that gave Maruca a deserved takedown but took away a Verkleeren escape.
Bo Pipher then fell to the returning Jacori Teemer at 157, giving ASU a 10-8 lead into the break.
The Nittany Lions regained the lead after the intermission with a strong showing by Vincenzo Joseph. He upended No. 5-ranked Josh Shields 7-4 to make the score 11-10 Penn State.
It looked like PSU would pull away a bit when Mark Hall picked up a major decision win over Anthony Valencia to extend the lead to 15-10, but a forfeit to Zahid Valencia gave ASU the lead back and for good.
Shakur Rasheed, recovering from ACL surgery, was not able to for the Nittany Lions at 184 and Creighton Edsell was also unavailable.
Kyle Conel’s struggles at 197 continued. He was beaten soundly by ASU’s Kordell Norfleet, 10-4 to make the team score 19-15 in favor of the Sun Devils.
Tiebreaker criteria then sat with ASU because of the forfeit, so Anthony Cassar needed either a pin or tech fall at 285 to keep the streak alive.
Cassar very nearly pulled it off, taking No. 5 Tanner Hall to his back in the first period, but Hall fought off and trailed 6-0. From there the two traded takedowns and Cassar earned the 9-5 victory, which left the Nittany Lions two points short of the team win.
Stay tuned to BSD tomorrow for more coverage of the dual!