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March 9, 2014

PSU Wrestling wins 4th straight B1G Championship

Penn State entered the final round of the 2014 Big Ten Wrestling Championships with just a 0.5-point lead over second-place Iowa. And that was only one of the dramatic storylines March 9 in Madison, Wis.

Nittany Lion David Taylor also became the first four-time Big Ten champion in Penn State history, beating heavier teammate Ed Ruth to the punch by fewer than 30 minutes. They become the 13th and 14th four-time champs in conference history.

"Taylor and Ruth both came through with a major decision for their fourth Big Ten championship," head coach Cael Sanderson said on the Big Ten Network after the tournament. "That's a big deal."

But perhaps the bigger deal was how their two titles helped Penn State clinch the tournament crown, its fourth conference championship in four seasons - all of which were spearheaded by Ruth and Taylor. In the end, Penn State outscored second-place Iowa, 140.5-135, while third-place Minnesota scored 118.5.

In the 165-pound final, Taylor upended Iowa's Nick Moore with a 14-5 major decision, while Ruth toppled the Hawkeyes' Ethen Lofthouse, 10-2, at 184 pounds to clinch the Nittany Lions' championship.

Penn State's other three finalists, however, weren't as successful. Nico Megaludis fell to rival Jesse Delgado of Illinois, 3-2, in overtime in the 125-pound final, 141-pounder Zain Retherford lost to Ohio State's Logan Stieber, 7-3, after previously having beaten Stieber in a December dual meet, and 197-pounder Morgan McIntosh dropped a tight 5-3 decision to Ohio State's Nick Heflin.

In review, all 10 PSU competitors placed at the conference tournament. Jimmy Gulibon finished seventh at 133 with a 3-2 record. James English finished fifth at 149 with a 3-2 record. Dylan Alton finished eighth at 157 with a 2-3 record. Matt Brown finished third at 174 with a 4-1 record, and 285-pound Jon Gingrich finished sixth with a 2-3 record.

"We're very excited," Sanderson said. "I think it was a great team effort. We got 10 guys through to the national tournament, so we're happy."

Taylor was honored as the tournament's Outstanding Wrestler for the third time in his career, as well as the 2014 Big Ten Wrestler of the Year. Sanderson was honored as the 2014 Big Ten Coach of the Year - for the fourth consecutive season.

What must they do in order to find similar success Oklahoma City, Okla., at the 2014 NCAA Championships?

"Just get rested up," Sanderson said, "and get ready to go."


2014 Big Ten Wrestling Championships - FINAL TEAM STANDINGS
Sunday, March 9, 2014 - Kohl Center, University of Wisconsin - Madison, Wis.

1: PENN STATE, 140.5
2: Iowa, 135.0
3: Minnesota, 118.5
4: Ohio State, 86.5
5: Nebraska, 79.0
6: Illinois, 78.5
7: Wisconsin, 73.0
8: Michigan, 71.5
9: Northwestern, 58.0
10: Indiana, 37.0
11: Purdue, 34.5
12: Michigan State, 21.5



125: #2 Nico Megaludis (Murrysville, Pa.), Jr. - #1 seed - 26-3 overall
NCAA QUALIFIER - 2nd Place


1st Rd: Garrison White, Northwestern, -- WBF (3:19)
Qtrs: #20 Nick Roberts, Ohio State (8th-seed) -- W, 12-5 dec.
Semis: #9 Ryan Taylor, Wisconsin (4th-seed) - W, 4-3 dec.
Finals: #3 Jesse Delgado, Illinois (2nd-seed) - L, 2-3 (TB2; 0:15 RT)


133: #15 Jimmy Gulibon (Latrobe, Pa.), Fr. -- #7 seed - 17-13 overall
NCAA QUALIFIER - 7th Place

1st Rd: Dominic Malone, Northwestern (10th-seed) -- W, 15-0 (TF; 5:47)
Qtrs: #5 Tyler Graff, Wisconsin (2nd-seed) -- L, 1-8 dec.
Consos: Shawn Nagel, Nebraska -- W, 9-4
Conso Qtr: #8 Johnni DiJulius, Ohio State - L, 1-6 dec.
7th Place: Dominic Malone, Northwestern (10th-seed) - W, 9-1 major dec.


141: #2 Zain Retherford (Benton, Pa.), Fr. -- #1 seed - 29-1 overall
NCAA QUALIFIER - 2nd Place


1st Rd: Colton McCrystal, Nebraska -- W, 8-0 major dec.
Qtrs: Jesse Thielke (8th-seed), Wisconsin -- W, 7-2 dec.
Semis: #11 Stephen Dutton, Michigan (4th-seed) - W, 4-0 dec.
Finals: #3 Logan Stieber, Ohio State (2nd-seed) - L, 3-7 dec.


149: #26 James English (York, Pa.), Sr. - #7 seed - 11-5 overall
NCAA QUALIFIER - 5th Place


1st Rd: Bye
Qtrs: #2 Nick Dardanes, Minnesota (2nd-seed) -- L, 2-3 dec.
Consos: Brandon Nelsen, Purdue -- W, 3-2 dec.
Conso Qtrs: #18 Ian Paddock, Ohio State (6th-seed) -- W, 5-2 dec.
Conso Semis: #8 Eric Grajales, Michigan (5th-seed) - L, 2-12 major dec.
5th Place: Ryan Lubeck, Wisconsin - W, 3-2 dec.


157: #11 Dylan Alton (Mill Hall, Pa.), Jr. - #5 seed - 18-5 overall
NCAA QUALIFIER - 8th Place


1st Rd: Roger Wildmo, Michigan State (12th-seed) -- W, 12-3 major dec.
Qtrs: #4 Derek St. John, Iowa (4th-seed) -- L, 1-4 dec.
Consos: Randall Languis, Ohio State -- W, 2-1 dec.
Conso Qtrs: #13 Brian Murphy, Michigan (8th-seed) - L, 1-3 dec.
7th Place: Zac Brunson, Illinois (7th-seed) - L, 4-13 major dec.


165: #1 David Taylor (St. Paris, Ohio), Sr. - #1 seed - 29-0 overall
NCAA QUALIFIER - BIG TEN CHAMPION


1st Rd: Bye
Qtrs: #20 Austin Wilson, Nebraska (8th-seed) -- W, 22-4 tech fall (TF; 7:00)
Semis: #13 Jackson Morse, Illinois (5th-seed) - WBF (0:40)
Finals: #4 Nick Moore, Iowa (2nd-seed) - W, 14-5 maj. dec.


174: #5 Matt Brown (West Valley City, Utah), Jr. - #2 seed - 28-4 overall
NCAA QUALIFIER - 3rd Place


1st Rd: Kevin Bialka, Northwestern -- W, inj. def. (0:02)
Qtrs: Scott Liegel, Wisconsin (7th-seed) -- W, 12-3 major dec.
Semis: #6 Mike Evans, Iowa (3rd-seed) - L, 2-3 dec.
Conso Semis: Tony Dallago, Illinois (5th-seed) - W, 16-5 major dec.
3rd Place: #4 Logan Storley, Minnesota (4th-seed) - W, 2-1 dec.


184: #2 Ed Ruth (Harrisburg, Pa.), Sr. - #1 seed - 29-1 overall
NCAA QUALIFIER - BIG TEN CHAMPION


1st Rd: Tanner Lynde, Purdue -- W, 9-1 major dec.
Qtrs: Nikko Reyes, Illinois -- W, 4-1 dec.
Semis: Dom Abounader, Michigan (5th-seed) W, 9-1 maj. dec.
Finals: #4 Ethan Lofthouse, Iowa (3rd-seed) W, 10-2 maj. dec.


197: #3 Morgan McIntosh (Santa Ana, Calif.), So. - #1 seed - 27-3 overall
NCAA QUALIFIER - 2nd Place


1st Rd: Bye
Qtrs: Timmy McCall, Wisconsin (8th-seed) -- W, 7-4 dec.
Semis: #13 Nathan Burak, Iowa (5th-seed) - W, 3-2 (tb) dec.
Finals: #5 Nick Heflin, Ohio State (2nd-seed) - L, 3-5 (SV2)


285: #14 Jon Gingrich (Wingate, Pa.), Jr. - #8 seed - 22-8 overall
NCAA QUALIFIER - 6th place


1st Rd: Collin Jensen, Nebraska (9th-seed) -- W, 12-3 major dec.
Qtrs: #1 Adam Coon, Michigan (1st-seed) -- W, 3-1 (sv)
Semis: #6 Tony Nelson, Minnesota (5th-seed) - LBF (1:58)
Conso Semis: #7 Mike McClure, Michigan State (6th-seed) - LBF (4:58)
5th Place: #2 Mike McMullan, Northwestern (3rd-seed) - L, 2-8


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