Competing on the main floor of the Xfinity Center, the Maryland wrestling team lost to Big Ten rivals No. 1 Penn State Nittany Lions on Sunday, Jan. 21. The Terps (4-9, 0-7) started the match with a 3-0 lead thanks to redshirt freshman Brandon Cray, but ultimately fell to the Nittany Lions (9-0, 5-0), 47-3.
In the first bout of the meet, Cray picked up not only the only win of the day for the Terps, but also his fourth-consecutive dual meet win on the season. Facing off against Penn State’s Devin Schnupp in the 125-pound weight class, the two were locked up scoreless in the first period. As the second period opened, Cray was able to get a reversal on Schnupp for two points along with 1:39 of riding time.
Schnupp countered with a takedown in the third to cut Cray’s lead down to one point, but an escape gave Cray the 4-2 lead he needed to win the match. Cray’s 4-2 win by decision gave the Terps its only three points of the day.
Perhaps the most anticipated matchup of the day was the final bout between No. 6 Youssif Hemida and No. 8 Nick Nevills for Penn State. The two were close in score throughout the entire bout, but Nevills got the first takedown on Hemida to gain two points. Hemida scored a point for an escape but was unable to overcome the deficit, losing 4-1 by decision.
This is only the second loss of the season for Hemida, compared to his 20 wins in dual meets and tournament action. His only other loss was to No. 4 Tanner Hall of Arizona State at the Midlands Championship on Dec. 29-30.
Maryland’s Jhared Simmons took on Corey Keener, the 133-pound senior for the Nittany Lions but lost by way of fall after Keener came out strong in the first period to build a substantial lead. In the 141-pound matchup, Ryan Diehl and No. 7 Nick Lee gave the crowd at XFINITY an exciting first period as they tied 5-5. However, Lee quickly built a substantial lead against Diehl in the second period to win by major decision.
Senior Zain Retherford, one of the four Nittany Lions ranked first in their respective weight classes, faced off against Maryland’s Alfred Bannister at 149, and was able to pin Bannister within the first period.
Penn State’s Jason Nolf, Vincenzo Joseph, and Bo Nickal all are ranked No. 1 in their respective weight classes, and all picked up wins by way of fall today.
The Terps’ Jahi Jones was defeated by No. 2 Mark Hall in the 174-pound bout by way of fall 2:44 into the bout.
Maryland’s David-Brian Whisler made his conference dual debut when he took on Anthony Cassar in the the 197-pound matchup. Though Whisler was able to get three points through the second period, Cassar ultimately took the bout by major decision.
Next up for the Terps, they will round out their road conference schedule when they travel to Illinois on Sunday, Jan. 28.
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