Keeping up with tradition, the Nittany Lions won the Keystone Classic for the third year in a row this past weekend. They totaled 192 points, 14 place-winners total, eight champions, and 21, yes, 21 pins. Drexel took second place with 109.5 and Penn took third with 108.0.
There were 18 total Nittany Lion wrestlers in the tournament and they posted at 60-16 overall record – 10 majors and 11 tech falls in addition to the 21 pins.
With true freshman Roman Bravo-Young’s impressive opening match last week at 133, hopes were high and he did not disappoint. He notched a pin and tech fall on his way to the finals where he took the title with a 24-9 win over Chandler Olson from Drexel.
Sophomore No. 4 Nick Lee won with similar style at 141 with a spotless 5-0 tournament record which included three tech falls, a pin and a major for the final win over Duke’s Josh Finesilver.
Two Nittany Lions went head to head at 149. Redshirt freshman No. 15 Brady Berge beat Jarod Verkleeren in a tight 3-2 semifinals match. The tough match caused Berge to take a medical forfeit in the finals while Verkleeran went on to a 4-2 record and took fourth place. Sophomore Luke Gardner went 5-2 and also placed fifth.
Senior No. 1 Jason Nolf notched three pins and one major on his way to the title over Drexel’s Evan Barczak. Nolf now has 49 career pins, nearing the Penn State all-time record of 53. Nittany Lion sophomore Bo Pipher went 4-2 at 157 to finish sixth.
Junior No. 1 Vincenzo Joseph was next at 165 with yet another dominating run. Joseph had four pins and a tech fall in the finals over Drexel’s Edeb Jarrell and he was named the tournament’s Outstanding Wrestler.
Junior No. 2 Mark Hall went 4-0 with two pins to win the title at 174 over No. 18 Matt Finesilver. Senior No. 4 Shakur Rasheed went 4-0 with three pins and a tech fall to take the crown at 184. He pinned Appalachian State’s Alan Clothier in just one minute in the final. Also at 184, junior Francisco Bisono went 2-3 with one major and took sixth place.
Senior No. 1 Bo Nickal picked up two pins and won the final with a major over Drexel’s No. 10 Stephen Loiseau. His career total pins now sits at 44, right behind Nolf and also coming up on the all-time school record.
Another Penn State clash went down in the semifinals at heavyweight. Senior Anthony Cassar and No. 2 Nick Nevills went head to head and Cassar came out with a 7-2 win. Cassar then dominated the finals with a major over No. 14 Joey Goodhart from Drexel. Nevills rebounded in the consolations and fought back for a third-place win.
Next up Penn State has a jam-packed weekend visiting Bucknell Friday, Nov. 30 and back to Happy Valley Sunday, Dec. 2 to face Lehigh in Rec Hall. The Big Ten Network will provide live coverage of the Lehigh match at 1:30 p.m.