Penn State 44 - Maryland 0: Greg Kerkvliet Makes Debut As Lions Rout Terps

By Rob Dougherty on February 23, 2021 at 9:25 am
Penn State 149lb Wrestler Beau Bartlett
Twitter/ @pennstateWREST - Mark Selders
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No. 2 Penn State finished another dual season undefeated with a 44-0 shutout of the Maryland Terrapins. The Nittany Lions won eight matches by bonus points, and demolished the overmatch southern neighbors. The Terrapins only scored one takedown in the entire dual, Penn State scored three pins. It was that kind of night for Maryland. 

Weight Result Team Score
285 Greg Kerkvliet pin Garrett Kappes, WBF (1:12) PSU 6-0
125 Robert Howard pin Zach Spence, WBF (3:38) PSU 12-0
133 No. 3 Roman Bravo-Young maj. dec. Jackson Cockerel, 24-13 PSU 16-0
141 No. 2 Nick Lee maj. dec. Danny Bertoni, 14-2 PSU 20-0
149 Beau Bartlett dec. Hunter Baxter, 9-3 PSU 23-0
157 Luke Gardner dec. Michael Doetsch, 8-2 PSU 26-0
165 No. 14 Joe Lee pin Jonathan Spadfora, WBF (5:56) PSU 32-0
174 No. 5 Carter Starocci maj. dec. Phillip Spadafora, 15-6 PSU 36-0
184 No. 2 Aaron Brooks maj. dec. Kyle Cochran, 17-5 PSU 40-0
197 No. 16 Michael Beard maj. dec. Jaron Smith, 13-3 PSU 44-0

Greg Kerkvliet Makes Debut and Dominates

This dual started at heavyweight, and went fully downhill for the Terrapins. Greg Kerkvliet has plenty of hype and he showed it against Maryland's Garrett Kappes. Kerkvliet took him down three times before locking up a cradle and getting a pin within 90 seconds. He also wrestled an extra match, where he took down Brian Bowes twice before winning with another fall.

There will be tougher matches for Kerkvliet because the Big Ten has a lot of talent at heavyweight, but he can compete with the best in the conference and even contend for a Big Ten title.

His seed at Big Tens probably will not be very high due to not competing this season until Monday, but he is on the tier of talent of No. 1 Gable Steveson (Minnesota) and No. 2 Mason Parris (Michigan). Though, due to his seeding, it's very possible that he may end up having to face one of them in the quarterfinals as opposed to the semifinals. 

Rest of the Dual Went as Predicted

There is not much more to say about this dual other than Penn State was expected to win by shutout, and that's precisely what they did. Robert Howard and Joe Lee got the first pins as Penn State starters. Roman Bravo-Young, Nick Lee, Carter Starocci, Aaron Brooks and Michael Beard all got major decision victories.

The only decisions were gained by Beau Bartlett and Luke Gardner, but neither were really threatened by their opponent at all. Luke Gardner was in for Brady Berge, who was just being rested per Penn State. 

Senior Day Ceremonies

Penn State had their senior day ceremonies, but due to COVID-19, it was a shame that the wrestlers could not be out there with their families in their final dual in Rec Hall. Luke Gardner, Scott Obendorfer, Bo Pipher, Jarod Verkleeren, and team manager Sofia Patria participated in the ceremony.

As mentioned, Luke Gardner wrestled and won his final match as a Nittany Lion by decision. Bo Pipher wrestled an extra match and won by a second period fall. I could only imagine how Rec Hall would have reacted to Pipher getting a fall in his final match. 

Maryland Program in Need of Huge Rebuild

Maryland has really struggled this season, and that was very clear on Monday. The Terrapins have been shut out in five duals this season. There is a very real chance Maryland doesn't win a match at Big Tens for the second year in a row. Maryland coach Alex Clemsen has his work cut out for him to get this program turned around. There is some young talent there, but they're going to need a lot more of it to get out of the basement of the Big Ten. 

Extra Matches

Weight Result
149 Beau Bartlett maj. dec. Lucas Cordio, 15-7
157 Bo Pipher pin Garrett Fisk, WBF (3:35)
197 Donovon Ball dec. Kevin Makosky, 7-5 SV-1
285 Greg Kerkvliet pin Brian Bowes, WBF (1:18)
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