NCAA-record crowd watches Penn State down Pitt in Pa. Wrestling Showcase

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The Penn State Nittany Lion wrestling team, three-time defending NCAA champions, welcomed intrastate rival Pittsburgh to a sold-out Bryce Jordan Center on Sunday (Dec. 8) and came away with a rousing 28-9 victory. Despite a developing snow storm, the dual meet was wrestled in front of 15,996 fans, setting a new NCAA all-time dual meet record and a new record for a Penn State Athletics event in the BJC.

Junior Nico Megaludis (Murraysville, Pa.), ranked No. 3 nationally at 125, opened up the dual meet with an outstanding 4-1 win over No. 9 Anthony Zanetta of Pittsburgh in the dual's first bout. Pitt tied the dual meet at 133 when No. 17 Shelton Mack notched two late takedowns to beat Penn State's Jordan Conaway (Abbottstown, Pa.) 5-2.

True freshman Zain Retherford (Benton, Pa.), ranked No. 11 at 141, put Penn State back on top with a hard-fought 3-2 win over Pitt's Edgar Bright. Panther Mike Racciato put the Panthers on top with a late pin (6:52) of Lion senior James English (York, Pa.) at 149 but James Vollrath (Richboro, Pa.) got Penn State back to even with a strong 7-2 win over Panther Cole Sheptock at 157.

Senior All-American David Taylor (St. Paris, Ohio), ranked No. 1 at 165, put Penn State up for good however, decking Pitt's Geno Morelli just nine seconds into the second period. The fall at the 3:09 mark put Penn State up 15-9 and was the 44th of Taylor's career. He is now just nine shy of the all-time Penn State record of 53. Taylor is 10-0 on the year with seven pins, two tech falls and one major.

All-American Matt Brown (West Valley City, Utah), ranked No. 3 at 174, kept Penn State rolling after intermission with a dominating 9-3 win over No. 9 Tyler Wilps. Brown forced Wilps into three stall warnings in the bout. Red-shirt Wes Phipps (Grove City, Pa.) clinched the dual meet for the Nittany Lions, dominating Panther Aaron Rothwell on his way to a 13-3 major with 4:29 in riding time.

Sophomore Morgan McIntosh (Santa Ana, Calif.), ranked No. 4 at 197, then posted a hard-fought and thrilling win over Panther Nick Bonaccorsi. With the bout tied 3-3 after regulation and a first sudden victory period, McIntosh rode Bonaccorsi out during the first tie-breaker then escaped quickly in his period to post the 4-3 (tb) decision. Junior Jimmy Lawson (Tom's River, N.J.), ranked No. 10 at 285, closed out the dual meet with hard fought 3-1 win over Pitt's P.J. Tasser. A late takedown gave the Lion the decision and put Penn State on top 28-9 for the final score.

Penn State was without the services of junior Andrew Alton (Mill Hall, Pa.), ranked No. 9 at 149 and junior All-American Dylan Alton (Mill Hall, Pa.), ranked No. 5 at 157, who are expected back mid-December following off-season surgery; and senior All-American Ed Ruth (Harrisburg, Pa.), ranked No. 1 at 184, who is serving a one-month suspension for violation of team rules and policies.

The Nittany Lions won the takedown battle as well, holding a 16-5 edge. Penn State won eight of 10 bouts in a dual for the fourth time in five duals as well. The Nittany Lions move to 5-0 with the win while Pittsburgh falls to 3-1.

The sold-out attendance figure of 15,996 sets two new Penn State records. First, it sets the new NCAA all-time record for dual meet attendance, out-doing the mark set by Iowa on Dec. 6, 2008, against Ohio State. It is an all-time best for a wrestling dual meet in Nittany Lion grappling history, besting the old mark of 11,245 set on Dec. 6, 1996, when Penn State hosted Iowa in the BJC (a 22-15 Iowa win early in the '96-97 season). It is also the largest ever crowd in the Bryce Jordan Center for a Penn State Athletics event. The old mark was 15,472, set on Feb. 1, 1997, when the Nittany Lion basketball team entertained Purdue. The sell-out is also the 13th straight home sell-out for Penn State, dating back to the 2011-12 season (with the prior 12 occurring in Rec Hall).

The Lions will open up Big Ten action this weekend when it entertains No. 12 Ohio State on Sunday, Dec. 15, in an already sold-out Rec Hall. The dual, which begins at noon, is a Big Ten Network live telecast.

For more details on individual bouts, go to

With the full season of Rec Hall duals sold out prior to the start of the campaign, a very limited number of standing room only tickets are available to a few of the remaining Rec Hall duals. People may purchase tickets by calling 1-800-NITTANY or by visiting the Penn State Athletics ticket office located in the BJC.

Fans are encouraged to follow Penn State wrestling via twitter at and on Penn State Wrestling's Facebook page at

Media Contacts: 
Last Updated December 09, 2013