No. 5 wrestling hosts No. 9 Virginia Tech Friday night

December 19, 2014

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- No. 5 Penn State (4-0, 1-0 B1G) returns for a dual in Rec Hall for the first time in over a month when it hosts No. 9 Virginia Tech (4-0). The Lions and Hokies tangle at 7 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 19.

A dual meet riddled with potential top-ranked match-ups is on tap as two of the nation's top teams tangle in sold out Rec Hall Friday night. Penn State, under the guidance of head coach Cael Sanderson, heads into the dual with eight ranked grapplers while Virginia Tech and head coach Kevin Dresser sport six.

Noting that pre-dual line-ups are `possible', collegiate wrestling fans could be in for a treat in this non-conference clash of the titans. At 125, Penn State junior Jordan Conaway (Abbottstown, Pa.) is set to battle No. 5 Joey Dance in a top-ten match-up. Conaway is 7-0 on the year while Dance is 11-1. Penn State sophomore Jimmy Gulibon (Latrobe, Pa.) is 7-0 and ranked No. 5 at 133 and matches up with No. 19 Kevin Norstrem, who is 9-5. Virginia Tech senior Devin Carter is ranked No. 3 at 141 with an 11-2 record and could face either Kade Moss (South Jordan, Utah) or Michael Waters (Advance, N.C.) for Penn State.

Penn State sophomore Zack Beitz (Mifflintown, Pa.) is ranked No. 13 at 149 and is 4-1 overall and is set to tangle with Hokie sophomore Sal Mastriani, who is 10-4 overall. At 157, both teams' ranked wrestlers are doubtful for the match. Penn State senior Dylan Alton (Mill Hall, Pa.) is ranked No. 9 but has yet to wrestle this year while Virginia Tech junior Nick Brascetta is ranked No. 5 with a 1-0 mark. With the distinct possibility of each wrestler not wrestling, it sets up a meeting between Penn State red-shirt freshman Cody Law (Windber, Pa.) and Tech junior David Wesley. Law is 9-4 on the year while Wesley is 0-2. Nittany Lion Garett Hammond (Chambersburg, Pa.) is 13-2 at 165 and could meet one of three Hokies; sophomore David Bergida (6-6), senior Chris Moon (1-1) or junior Chad Strube (4-2).

Two-time All-American Matt Brown (West Valley City, Utah), ranked No. 2 at 174 with a 7-0 record, is set to meet No. 9 Zach Epperly, who will put is 11-2 mark on the line in the top-ten match-up. Lion red-shirt freshman Matt McCutcheon (Apollo, Pa.), ranked No. 18 at 184 with an 11-3 record, will take on Virginia Tech's Austin Gabel (6-6) and Lion All-American Morgan McIntosh (Santa Ana, Calif.), ranked No. 4 at 197 with an 8-0 mark, meets Hokie freshman Jared Haught (11-4). At heavyweight, Penn State junior Jon Gingrich (Wingate, Pa.) is ranked No. 8 with a 4-0 mark and senior Jimmy Lawson (Toms River, N.J.) is unbeaten with a 6-0 record. One of the two Lions will step to the mat to face off against No. 6 Ty Walz of Virginia Tech, who is 12-1 on the year.

Penn State leads the all-time series with Virginia Tech 5-0. The Lions own the last meeting, a 26-9 victory at the Virginia Duals on Jan. 8, 2010. Penn State won the last Rec Hall meeting a half century ago. The last time the Hokies visited Rec Hall was a 28-0 Penn State victory on Feb. 8, 1964.

Penn State heads to Chattanooga, Tenn., for the 2015 Southern Scuffle. The event takes place on Thursday and Friday, Jan. 1-2, 2015, at Chattanooga. Penn State's next home dual is set for Friday, Jan. 9, 2015, when Indiana visits for a 7 p.m. match-up. A very limited number of standing room only (SRO) tickets are available for some Penn State's Rec Hall duals. Fans can call the Penn State ticket office at 1-800-NITTANY to purchase. Penn State Fans are encouraged to follow Penn State wrestling via twitter at www.twitter.com/pennstateWREST and on Penn State Wrestling's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/pennstatewrestling. The 2014-15 Penn State Wrestling season is presented by The Family Clothesline.

#5 PENN STATE NITTANY LIONS (4-0, 1-0 B1G)
WT NAME EL HT/HS REC
125 #10 Jordan Conaway Jr. Abbottstown, Pa./New Oxford / 7-0
133 #5 Jimmy Gulibon So. Latrobe, Pa./Derry Area / 7-0
141 Kade Moss Fr. South Jordan, Utah/Bingham / 7-4
Michael Waters Jr. Advance, N.C./Davie / 8-4
149 #13 Zack Beitz So. Mifflintown, Pa./Juniata / 4-1
Luke Frey Jr. Montoursville, Pa./Montoursville / 5-1
157 Cody Law Fr. Windber, Pa./Forest Hills / 9-4
#9 Dylan Alton Sr. Mill Hall, Pa./Central Mountain / 0-0
165 Garett Hammond Fr. Chambersburg, Pa./Chambersburg / 13-2
174 #2 Matt Brown Sr. West Valley City, Utah/Cyprus / 7-0
184 #18 Matt McCutcheon Fr. Apollo, Pa./Kiski Area / 11-3
197 #4 Morgan McIntosh Jr. Santa Ana, Calif./Calvary Chapel / 8-0
285 #8 Jon Gingrich Sr. Wingate, Pa./Bald Eagle Area / 4-0
OR Jimmy Lawson Sr. Toms River, N.J./Manchester Township / 6-0

#9 VIRGINIA TECH (4-0)
WT NAME EL HT REC
125 #5 Joey Dance So. Christianburg, Va. / 11-1
133 #19 Kevin Norstrem Fr. Brandon, Fla. / 9-5
141 #3 Devin Carter Sr. Christianburg, Va. / 11-2
149 Sal Mastriani So. Towaco, N.J. / 10-4
157 David Wesley Jr. Richmond, Va. / 0-2
#5 Nick Brascetta Jr. St. Paris, Ohio / 1-0
165 Chris Moon Sr. Fauquier, Va. / 1-1
OR David Bergida So. Belle Meade, N.J. / 6-6
OR Chad Strube Jr. Frederick, Md. / 4-2
174 #9 Zach Epperly Fr. Christianburg, Va. / 11-2
184 Austin Gabel Jr. Parker, Colo. / 6-6
197 Jared Haught Fr. Parkersburg, W. Va. / 11-4
285 #6 Ty Walz So. Cleveland, Ohio / 12-1
 

Team ranking is Intermat Tournament Power Index (TPI) as of 12/16/14
Individual rankings are Intermat as of 12/16/14

Last Updated December 19, 2014