NCAA wrestling: Defending champ Penn State grabs first-day lead

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The first day of the NCAA Division I wrestling championships at Oklahoma City was not kind to Penn State, but the Nittany Lions still led the team standings with 26.5 points.

Penn State, a three-time defending NCAA team champion, had nine of 10 entries post victories in the first round, with Derry graduate James Gulibon as the only loser. Gulibon dropped a 4-0 decision to Oklahoma State's Jonathan Morrison at 133 pounds. Gulibon did rebound with a victory in the consolation bracket to stay alive.

For more Nittany Lions lost in the second round, with the biggest disappointment at 197 pounds. Morgan McIntosh, the No. 3 seed, posted a 5-0 victory against Lehigh's John Bolich, then dropped a 3-2 decision to Chris Penny of Virginia Tech in the second round.

Dylan Alton, the No. 13 seed at 157 pounds, and Jonathan Gingrich, the No. 14 seed at 285, also lost. Alton dropped a 4-1 decision to Kent State's Ian Miller, the No. 4 seed, in the second round. Gingrich fell to the consolation bracket after a 5-2 loss to Indiana's Adam Chalfant.

"Anytime you lose matches you don't need to lose, it's frustrating," Penn State coach Cael Sanderson said. "We need our people in the consolation bracket to keep winning."

Nico Megaludis, Zain Retherford, David Taylor, Mathew Brown and Edward Ruth reached the quarterfinals for Penn State.

Megaludis, the No. 3 seed at 125, advanced to the quarterfinals for the third consecutive year. Megaludis, a Franklin Regional graduate, won, 23-8, in the first round against Lehigh's Darian Cruz, then posted a 6-0 shutout of Oklahoma State's Edward Klimara.

Retherford, the No. 3 seed at 141, beat The Citadel's Undrakhbayar Khishignyam, 5-0, in the first round, then beat Pitt's Edgar Bright, 3-0. Bright posted a 3-1 against Boston University's Tyler Scotton in the first round.

Taylor, the No. 1 seed at 165, recorded two pins to remain unbeaten at 31-0. Taylor, a three-time finalist, pinned South Dakota State's Joseph Brewster and Stanford's Jim Wilson.

Brown, the No. 5 seed at 174, posted a 17-3 major decision in the first round against Stanford's Kyle Meyer, then won, 6-1, against Iowa State's Tanner Weatherman.

Ruth, the No. 2 seed at 184, pinned Wisconsin's Jackson Hein in the first round. Ruth, a two-time NCAA champion, recorded a 15-0 technical fall in the second round against Illinois' Lazaraus Reyes.

Edinboro had two wrestlers advance to the quarterfinals: A.J. Schopp and Mitchell Port. Schopp, the No. 2 seed at 133, opened with a pin of Navy's Colton Rasche, then registered a 6-2 win against Michigan's Rosario Bruno.

"I was glad to get the fall in the first match. It felt good. In the second match, that's the third time in a year that I wrestled Bruno. He knew what was coming so he stalled. I'm used to it. I came up with the win and I'm moving on."

Port, the No. 1 seed at 141, advanced to the quarterfinals and remained unbeaten at 28-0. Port pinned Iowa State's Gabe Moreno and Lehigh's Laike Gardner.

Pitt had only one of its eight entries advance to the quarterfinals. Tyler Wilps, the No. 7 seed at 174 pounds, posted a 4-2 decision against Penn's Bradley Wukie in the first round, then won, 6-2, in the second round against Central Michigan's Mike Ottinger.

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