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Penn State Wrestling

Penn State Wrestling: Match-by-Match Breakdown of Friday’s Dual vs. Iowa

Carter Starocci, Penn State Wrestling
Photo by NCAA: Carter Starocci

It’s time for the biggest dual meet of the season for Penn State wrestling. The team takes on No. 3 Iowa Friday night. Here’s a match-by-match breakdown.

125 – No. 2 Braeden Davis (Penn State Wrestling) vs. No. 7 Drake Ayala (Iowa): Here’s another one where fans can find out a lot about Davis. Davis probably shouldn’t have won last week, and Ayala had a tough loss in a tiebreaker to Michigan’s Michael DeAugustino. Let’s go with a close win by Ayala to start.

Prediction: Ayala by decision. Iowa leads 3-0.

133- No. 6 Aaron Nagao (PSU) vs. No. 20 Cullan Schriever (Iowa): It was a tough loss last week for Nagao against Ohio State’s Nic Bouzakis. But the way he finished the match was encouraging. We’ll go with another close win here, but this time for Penn State. Prediction: Nagao by decision. Meet tied 3-3.

141 – No. 1 Beau Bartlett (PSU) vs. No. 2 Real Woods (Iowa): Another dual meet where Bartlett is going to be the featured match of the night. Michigan’s Sergio Lemley shocked everyone by getting a major decision over Woods last week. Expect Woods to wrestle much better this time. Prediction: Woods by decision. Iowa leads 6-3.

149 – No. 10 Tyler Kasak (PSU) vs. No. 12 Caleb Rathjen (Iowa): It’s a little bit of a toss-up here. Kasak has been impressive since taking over the starter’s role, and there shouldn’t be any reason to think he could drop this one after getting another impressive victory last week. Prediction: Kasak by decision. Match tied 6-6.

157 – No. 1 Levi Haines (PSU) vs. No. 5 Jared Franek (Iowa): It’s another case of how can you bet against Levi Haines? This could be an interesting one, as well, but it’s hard to go against the top dog. Prediction: Haines by decision. Penn State leads 9-6.

165 – No. 7 Mitchell Mesenbrink (PSU) vs. No. 6 Michael Caliendo (Iowa): It just seems like Mesenbrink is still too low in the InterMat rankings. You could make an argument he’s been the most impressive on the team this year, especially as a redshirt freshman. Prediction: Mesenbrink by major decision. Penn State leads 13-6.

174 – No. 1 Carter Starocci (PSU) vs. No. 7 Patrick Kennedy (Iowa): Here is where things could get interesting. Iowa true freshman phenom Gabe Arnold very well could wrestle either at 174 or 184. It would probably be the most intriguing bout of the night if Arnold would be sent out for Starocci. But we’re going to stick with the match notes and go with Kennedy is the guy. Prediction: Starocci by decision. Penn State leads 16-6.

184 – No. 6 Bernie Truax (PSU) vs. NR Aidan Riggins (Iowa): Truax is probably itching to get back out on the mat after giving up a fall last week against Ohio State. But again, it’s a question on if it will be Riggins or maybe Arnold again. We’re still going to go with the match notes and go with Riggins. Prediction: Truax by major decision. Penn State leads 20-6.

197 – No. 1 Aaron Brooks (PSU) vs. No. 11 Zach Glazier (Iowa): Glazier is another guy where it feels like he’s ranked too low. It’s hard to see him beating Brooks, but he’s been impressive. Prediction: Brooks by decision. Penn State leads 23-6.

285 – No. 1 Greg Kerkvliet (PSU) vs. NR Ben Kueter/No. 29 Bradley Hill (Iowa): It’s a shame that Tony Cassioppi is one of the Iowa wrestlers that are suspended. It would have made for a much better matchup with Kerkvliet. Prediction: Kerkvliet by major decision. Penn State wins 27-6.

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