No. 10 Arizona State snaps No. 1 PSU’s 60-match win streak
Arizona State coach Zeke Jones said earlier in the week that having the four-time defending champion Penn State wrestling team come to Tempe to wrestle his Sun Devils was big. Little did he know how big it would be.
Jones’ No. 10 Sun Devils split 10 matches with the No. 1 Nittany Lions, but recorded more bonus point wins to upset Penn State, 19-18, Friday night at Desert Financial Arena in Tempe, Arizona, to snap PSU’s 60-match winning streak.
Penn State had not tasted defeat in 1,741 days, since a 21-18 loss to Oklahoma State on Feb. 15, 2015.
The deciding points came on a forfeit at 184 pounds and an opening major decision at 125 pounds, along with three decisions.
The Nittany Lions got a technical fall from Nick Lee at 141 and an 11-3 major decision from Mark Hall at 174, along with decisions from Roman Bravo-Young (133), Vincenzo Joseph (165) and Anthony Cassar (285).
Penn State nearly snatched the victory from Arizona State at 285. With the Nittany Lions trailing 19-15 and knowing that a tie would produce a criteria win for the Sun Devils, Cassar took Tanner Hall down to his back and was millimeters away from pinning him in the first period. Hall, however, fought off his back and held Cassar to a 9-5 decision to clinch the win.
Arizona State, from the very start, took the battle to the short-handed Nittany Lions. Neither No. 5 Brady Berge (157) nor No. 2 Shakur Rasheed (184) wrestled as they recover from injuries.
No. 19 Brandon Courtney dominated Brody Teske 18-7 at 125 to stake the Sun Devils to a 4-0 lead.
Penn State’s third-ranked Bravo-Young won in his homecoming match, but he had to hold on to do it. Leading 7-4 after two periods, Bravo-Young was warned three times for stalling in the final period, giving No. 16 Josh Kramer two points and the Nittany Lion sophomore won, 7-6.
No. 3 Lee gave Penn State its first lead as he made quick work of Cory Crooks with an 18-3 technical fall in 4:27 at 141.
At 149, ASU’s Josh Maruca scored the initial takedown, in the first period, and Jarod Verkleeren could never quite catch up in a 5-4 loss.
And, at 157, Jacori Teemer put the Sun Devils back in the lead, 10-8, as he decisioned Bo Pipher, 9-4.
Penn State came out of the break intent on keeping its streak intact and won two straight.
Top-ranked Joseph used two second-period takedowns and another in the third to edge No. 5 Josh Shields, 7-4 at 165.
Then, at 174, No. 1 Hall shrugged off the initial takedown by No. 8 Anthony Valencia and proceeded to pick up four takedowns of his and 1:44 in riding time to earn an 11-3 major decision.
Arizona State’s top-ranked Zahid Valencia received a forfeit at 184 to set up a pair of crucial bouts at 197 and 285 to finish the dual.
The Sun Devils pushed their lead to 19-15 as Kendell Norfleet used four takedowns to upset No. 7 Kyle Conel, 10-4, to set up the crucial bout at 285.
No. 10 Arizona State 19,
No. 1 Penn State 18
(Friday at Tempe, Arizona)
125: No. 19 Brandon Courtney, ASU, maj. Dec. Brody Teske, 18-7. 133: No. 3 Roman Bravo-Young, PSU, dec. No. 16 Josh Kramer, 7-6. 141: No. 3 Nick Lee, PSU, won by tech. fall over Cory Crooks, 18-3 (4:27). 149: Josh Maruca, ASU, dec. Jarod Verkleeren, 5-4. 157: Jacori Teemer, ASU, dec. Bo Pipher, 9-4. 165: No. 1 Vincenzo Joseph, PSU, dec. No. Josh Shields, 7-4. 174: No. 1 Mark Hall, PSU, dec. No. 8 Anthony Valencia, 11-3. 184: No. 1 Zahid Valencia, ASU, won by forfeit. 197: Kordell Norfleet, ASU, dec. No. 7 Kyle Conel, 10-4. 285: No. 1 Anthony Cassar, PSU, dec. No. 5 Tanner Hall, 9-5
Takedowns: Penn State 19; Arizona State 15.
Records: Penn State (1-1), Arizona State (5-0).