Iowa's #7 ranked 165 pound Alex Marinelli takes down Northwestern's Michael Sepke during the Iowa vs. Northwestern dual meet on Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018. The Hawkeyes defeated the Wildcats, 33-2. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa wrestling falls to top-ranked Penn State.

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Freshmen Spencer Lee and Alex Marinelli were bright spots for Iowa wrestling, but the Hawkeyes couldn’t overcome the Nittany Lions’ power.

By Taylor McNitt

taylor-mcnitt@uiowa.edu

While the score didn’t change much from last season’s result, Iowa wrestling still gave powerhouse Penn State a shock in University Park on Feb. 10.

True freshman Spencer Lee, the third-ranked wrestler at 125 pounds, started the dual with a pin in the second minute of the match, giving Iowa the early leg up by 6 points. The Nittany Lions, however, took the next two matches by decision and tied the score.

The 149-pound battle was a much-anticipated match. Undefeated No. 2 Brandon Sorensen was set to take on No. 1 Zane Retherford. Both fought hard for every point of their low-scoring match, but Retherford successfully defended his ranking, 6-2, and ended Sorensen’s undefeated streak.

Following Retherford’s victory, Penn State led 9-6, but Iowa’s No. 2 157-pounder Michael Kemerer changed that with a major decision over Bo Pipher. Heading into the 165-pound matchup, the score was 10-9, Iowa.

The 165 match seemed to shock everyone. Against the odds, No. 7 Alex Marinelli defeated No. 1 Vincenzo Joseph, a 2017 NCAA Champion. Marinelli won the match by decision, stamping the first blemish on Joseph’s record and boosting the score to 13-9.

But that is where Iowa’s score remained stuck for the rest of the dual. Penn State’s No. 2 Mark Hall and Bo Nickal handily defeated Iowa sophomore Joey Gunther and junior Mitch Bowman by pins in a minute or less. No. 7 sophomore Cash Wilcke also fell, by a major decision to No. 8 Anthony Cassar. To close the meet, Iowa’s No. 3 Sam Stoll fell by decision to No. 6 Nick Nevills, making the final score 28-13.

 

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