Freshman Wright places sixth at NCAA Wrestling Championships

St. Louis, Mo. — Penn State's newest wrestling All-Americans took to the mat in St. Louis Saturday morning looking to improve their final podium positions at the 2009 NCAA Wrestling Championships. True freshman Quentin Wright (Wingate, Pa.) and red-shirt freshman Frank Molinaro (Barnegat, N.J.) closed out the 2008-09 season with a sixth place and eighth place finish, respectively.

Wright dropped a hard-fought 4-2 decision to #5 Raymond Jordan of Missouri in the consolation semifinals. The loss moved him to the fifth place bout against Cornell's Steve Anceravage of Cornell. This time, however Anceravage got the better of Wright, posting a 13-3 major decision. Wright is Penn State's first true freshman All-American since 1998 and posted a 4-3 record in his first trip to nationals. The sixth place NCAA All-American, Wright ends the campaign with a 33-13 record.

Molinaro lost his seventh place bout to #1 Kellen Russell of Michigan 7-4. Molinaro went 4-3 in the tournament and faced the #1, #2, #8, #9 and #12 seeds. He ends his season as the eighth place All-American at 141 and with a 23-19 record.

Penn State will endd the 2009 NCAA Championships with 31.0 points and finished 17thl. The Nittany Lions' six qualifiers went 16-14 overall with the two youngest Lions earning the school's 162nd and 163rd All-American laurels.

BOUT BY BOUT:

141: Red-shirt freshman Frank Molinaro (Barnegat, N.J.) met #1 Kellen Russell of Michigan in the seventh place bout. Molinaro got in deep on the first shot he took, looking to work the high single into a takedown. But Russell was able to counter and force a stalemate at the 2:30 mark and action returned to the center circle. Molinaro took the lead with a quick high double at the :52 mark, taking Russell down for the score. Russell worked to break out from Molinaro's control and moved around and on top of the Lion to reverse him. No back points were initially given, but the back up official decided to award two points nonetheless, over ruling the head official and Russell led 4-2 after one period. Russell chose down to start the second stanza and Molinaro cut him loose to a 5-2 lead, looking for another takedown. Molinaro worked on a high double but Russell was able to fight off the move and force a reset at the :51 mark. Molinaro continued to pressure the Wolverine, forcing the tournament's top seed back towards the outside circle. Molinaro could not break through Molinaro's defense and trailed 5-2 after two periods. The Lion freshman chose down to start the third period and quickly escaped to a 5-3 deficit. After a reset at the 1:02 mark, Molinaro dove in and looked to complete a high double. The Penn State freshman nearly got the call on the edge of the mat, but action moved outside the circle at the :34 mark. Still hoping to force overtime, Molinaro worked in on a high single and frantically tried to finish off the move. The last ditch effort was countered by Russell and the Wolverine was able to ice the match with another takedown. Molinaro escaped but Russell got the 7-4 win. Molinaro ends his first trip to the NCAA Championships, getting a wild card bid, as an All-American. The eighth place finish came thanks to a 4-3 mark against the #1, #2, #8, #9 and #12 seeds. Molinaro ends the campaign with a 23-19 record.

174: True freshman Quentin Wright (Wingate, Pa.) took on #5 Raymond Jordan of Missouri in the consolation semifinals. Wright took the first shot, but Jordan quickly countered and slipped behind the Lion for an early 2-0 lead. Wright escaped to a 2-1 deficit at the 1:15 mark and began looking for his first takedown. Wright countered a late Jordan shot and was nearly able to throw the Tiger grappler, but the veteran Jordan worked out of trouble and action moved out of bounds. Trailing 2-1 and with a 1:04 riding time deficit, Wright chose down to start the second stanza but could not break free of a strong Jordan ride. Each wrestler picked up a first stall warning during the period with Jordan maintaining the offensive position. Wright escaped to a 2-2 tie at the :33 mark, but Jordan had amassed 2:33 in riding time. With the bout tied 2-2, Jordan chose down to star the third period. Wright's strategy was to ride the Tiger out to force overtime or turn him for the win. Wright maintained control for a minute-plus but Jordan was able to escape to a 3-2 lead at the :41 mark, still with a 1:17 riding time edge. The Nittany Lions freshman needed a takedown in the final :30 to force a tie but Jordan simply backed off the mat every time Wright shot, running the clock down to zeros and getting away with a hard-fought 4-2 win. The loss sends Wright into the fifth place bout where he will face Cornell's Steve Anceravage.

Wright and Anceravage faced each other earlier in the tournament, with Wright posting a hard-fought 8-6 win. This time, however, Anceravage caught Wright early, using a high throw to send him to his back for almost a full minute. Wright was able to fight off the pin and trailed 5-1 at the 1:30 mark. Wright shot high on the Big Red senior, but Anceravage was able to counter the shot and take Wright down to up his lead to 7-1. He then rode Wright out and carried the 7-1 lead with 2:16 in riding time into the second period. Wright chose neutral to start the second period and looked for an opening. But once again, the Cornell senior countered the true freshman's offense and moved behind him for another takedown and a 9-1 lead. Leading 9-1 with a guaranteed riding time point, Anceravage chose down to start the final period. An escape gave Anceravage a 10-1 lead. Wright kept up the pressure, forcing Anceravage into a first stall warning and then a second. But Anceravage was able to take Wright down once more time to lead 12-2 with :42 left in the bout. Wright managed one more escape, but the riding time point for Anceravage gave the fifth-year senior a 13-3 major over the true freshman. Wright ends his first season of collegiate wrestling as the sixth place All-American. He went 4-3 at the tournament and ends the 2008-09 season with a 33-13 record.

2009 NCAA Wrestling Championships
Team Top Ten - End Session 5
1: Iowa - 97.5
2: Ohio State - 88.0
3: Iowa State - 80.5
4: Nebraska - 74.5
5: Cornell - 69.5
6: Edinboro - 68.0
7: Missouri - 66.0
8: Illinois - 55.0
9: Wisconsin - 53.0
10: Maryland - 47.5
17: PENN STATE - 31.0

Attendance session 5: 16,326

Penn State's record overall through session five - FINAL TOTAL: 16-14

125 - Brad Pataky (Clearfield, Pa./Clearfield HS), So.
Tournament Record: 3-2 - Overall record now 31-11 - Season Complete
Pigtail: WBF (1:40) Ian Moser, Bloomsburg
Rd 1: L, 6-11 dec. #6 James Nicholson, Old Dominion
Cns 1: W, 12-2 maj. dec. Jay Ivanco, Clarion
Cns 2: W, 12-6 dec. B.J. Futrell, Illinois
Cns 3: L, 3-9 dec. Nicholas Bedelyon, Kent State

133 - #10 Jake Strayer (South Fork, Pa./Forest Hills HS), Sr.
Tournament Record: 2-2 - Overall record now 18-10 - Season Complete
Rd. 1: W, 7-2 dec. Ricky Deubel, Edinboro
Rd. 2: W, 7-3 (TB3) dec. #7 Nick Fanthorpe, Iowa State
Qtrs: L, 6-15 maj. dec. #2 Reece Humphrey, Ohio State
Rd. 12: L, def. (officials dec.) #8 Joe Baker, Navy

141 - Frank Molinaro (Barnegat, N.J./Southern Regional HS), Fr.
Tournament Record: 4-3 - Overall record now 23-19 - 8th PLACE, ALL-AMERICAN
Rd. 1: L, 1-7 dec. #8 Ryan Williams, Old Dominion
Cns 1: W, med. forf. #9 Corey Jantzen, Harvard
Cns 2: W, 5-4 dec. Tyler Nauman, Pittsburgh
Cns 3: W, 4-0 dec. Seth Ciasulli, Lehigh
Rd. of 12: W, 10-6 dec. #12 Drew Lashaway, Kent State
Cns Qtrs.: L, 6-8 dec. #2 Zach Tanelli, Wisconsin
7th Place Bout: L, 4-7 dec. #1 Kellen Russell, Michigan

149 - #2 Bubba Jenkins (Virginia Beach, Va./First Colonial HS), Jr.
Tournament Record: 0-2 - Overall record now 24-3 - Season Complete
Rd. 1: L, 6-12 dec. Matt Fittery, Lock Haven
Cns 1: L, 1-10 maj. dec. David Jauregui, West Virginia

165 - Dan Vallimont (Lake Hopatcong, N.J./Jefferson Twp. HS), Jr.
Tournament Record: 3-2 -- Overall record now 24-12 - Season Complete
Rd. 1: W, 8-6 (sv) #9 Brandon Mason, Oklahoma State
Rd. 2: L, 3-11 maj. dec. #8 Jonathan Reader, Iowa State
Cns 2: W, 8-6 dec. Donald Jones, West Virginia
Cns 3: W, 10-5 dec. Seth Garvin, Chattanooga
Rd. of 12: L, 2-5 dec. Andrew Rendos, Bucknell

174 - #11 Quentin Wright (Wingate, Pa./Bald Eagle Area HS), Fr.
Tournament Record: 4-3 - Overall record now 33-13 - 6th PLACE, ALL-AMERICAN
Rd. 1: WBF (1:17) Byron Sigmon, UNC-Greensboro
Rd. 2: W, 8-6 dec. #6 Steve Anceravage, Cornell
Qtrs: L, 1-4 dec. #3 Brandon Browne, Nebraska
Round of 12: W, 4-3 dec. Trevor Perry, Indiana
Cons. Qtrs.: W, 10-6 dec. #2 Michael Cannon, American
Cons. Semis: L, 2-4 dec. #5 Raymond Jordan, Missouri
5th Place: L, 3-13 maj. dec. #6 Steve Anceravage, Cornell

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Last Updated November 18, 2010