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Penn State Wrestling

Penn State Wrestling: 6 Going to Big Ten Championship Matches

Penn State Wrestling
Photo by Eddie Provident, Nittany Sports Now: Greg Kerkvliet

Six Penn State wrestling performers competing in this weekend’s Big Ten Tournament in Ann Arbor, Michigan, are one match away from winning a conference championship. 

They are: Roman Bravo-Young (133), Levi Haines (157), Carter Starocci (174), Aaron Brooks (184), Max Dean (197) and Greg Kerkvliet (185).

Each of the six wrestlers had a bye and thus only had to wrestle two matches.

Bravo-Young got his 50th and 51st straight wins by beating Iowa’s Brody Teske in a 13-2 major decision and Michigan’s Dylan Ragusin via regular decision 8-2. RBY will fight for his third straight Big Ten title Sunday against Minnesota’s Aaron Nagao, the sixth-seed who upset No. 2 Jesse Mendez of Ohio State with a 6-4 “sudden victory” in the semis.


At 157, Haines continued his stellar freshman season with two wins and a berth in the finals.

Haines, the No. 2 seed, shut out Indiana’s Derek Gilcher, seeded 10th, 6-0 in session one. In the nightcap, Haines grinded out a 3-2 decision over No. 3 Kendall Coleman of Purdue. Haines looks to add a conference title to his already impressive resume by beating top-seeded Peyton Robb from Nebraska.

At 174, the top-ranked wrestler in the country did his thing. Starocci earned a major decision over Northwestern’s Troy Fisher, seeded eighth, in session one. In the second session, the two-time national champion and defending Big Ten champ took care of business again, beating fourth-seeded Bailee O’Reilly of Minnesota, 17-3. Starocci looks to make it back to back conference crowns against Nebraska’s Mikey Labriola, who’s the No. 2 seed.

Aaron Brooks finished second at Big Tens last year, and looks to win his third title overall Sunday. The No. 1 wrestler in the country at 184 and two-time national champ tech-falled Rutgers’ Brian Soldano (No. 8) and earned an 18-6 major over Michigan’s Matt Finesilver (No. 4). Brooks now takes on No. 2 Kaleb Romero of Ohio State.

At 197, Dean reached a milestone, winning his 100th college match. More importantly, he reached the Big Ten Championship with two wins. Dean shut out Minnesota’s Michial Foy (No. 9) 2-0 and later took care of Iowa’s Jacob Warner (No. 5) in a 3-1 decision. Dean’s last obstacle to win his second straight Big Ten title is No. 2 Silas Allred of Nebraska.

Finally, Greg Kerkvliet, who warmed up in a shirt that said “WIN, ‘GREG’, WIN” did indeed win, twice.

First, he shutout Ohio State’s Tate Orndorff (No. 7), in a 9-1 major. In the nightcap, Kerkvliet shut out No. 3 Tony Cassioppi 5-0.

The only Penn State wrestling semifinalist who didn’t move to the finals was No. 2 Beau Bartlett at 141. Bartlett fell to No. 3 Brock Hardy of Nebraska in a 7-3 decision. He’ll now wrestle Purdue’s Parker Filius (No. 8) in a consolation match.

The consolation matches will take place in session III, which is scheduled to start at 1 ET Sunday. The championship matches will be in Session IV, scheduled to begin at 4:30.

Here is the list of championship matches that Penn Staters will be competing in, as well as the team standings heading into Sunday.


133: No. 1 Roman Bravo-Young (Penn State) vs. No. 6 Aaron Nago (Minnesota)

157: No. 2 Levi Haines (Penn State) vs. No. 1 Peyton Robb (Nebraska) 

174: No. 1 Carter Starocci (Penn State) vs. No. 2 Mikey Labriola (Nebraska)

184: No. 1 Aaron Brooks (Penn State) vs. No. 2 Kaleb Romero (Ohio State)

197: No. 1 Max Dean (Penn State) vs. No. 2 Silas Allred (Nebraska 

285: No. 2 Greg Kerkvliet (Penn State) vs. No. 1 Mason Parris (Michigan)


Penn State– 120

Iowa– 105.5

Nebraska– 98.5

Ohio State– 77

Minnesota– 73

Michigan– 64

Northwestern– 64

Wisconsin– 46.5

Illinois– 36.5

Purdue– 36.5

Rutgers– 30

Indiana– 27

Michigan State– 27

Maryland– 19.5


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