LAS VEGAS Good morning and welcome to the Cliff Keen Invitational from the Las Vegas Convention Center. Penn has nine wrestlers slated to compete in the tournament this weekend and action has just started with the pigtail round. Coming up in a few minutes will be the first round.
Penn has seven wrestlers seeded in the tournament, including Rollie Peterkin, the number one seed at 125 pounds. Here are the first round matchups for the Red and Blue that I know right now:
125 pounds #1 Rollie Peterkin vs. Cory Borges (Montana State)
133 pounds - #11 Bryan Ortenzio vs. Rick Schilley (Northern State)
149 pounds - #5 Cesar Grajales vs. Walter Peppelman (Harvard)
285 pounds - #10 Trey McLean vs. B.J. Stewart (Cumberland)
At 184 pounds, #9 Thomas Shovlin will be in action in a pigtail bout with Kyle Sand of Adams State.
#9 Matt Dragon (157), #4 Zack Shanaman (165), Andrew Coles (174) and Dan Zander (197) all await winners of pigtail matches to determine their first round opponents.
10:24 PST Penn has had three matches so far and has picked up three wins.
Thomas Shovlin opened things up with a pin over Kyle Sand of Adams State in 1:13. Shovlin scored a takedown off a shot to the right leg 24 seconds in. After a bit of scrambling in front of the Penn corner, he caught Sand on his back and held the shoulders to the mat for the pinfall win to advance. He will wrestle Eric Bugenhagen of Wisconsin in the next round.
Rollie Peterkin, the number one seed at 125 pounds, scored a major decision win over Cory Borges of Montana State, 10-2. The majority of the scoring came in the opening period when Peterkin scored a takedown 1:40 into the frame. He then turned Borges on his back for three near-fall points, coming very close to a pin. Peterkin added three more back points at the buzzer with another nearfall. Peterkin added a reversal in the second period for his final points and Borges scored a late takedown to get on the board with 22 seconds left, but it was too little, too late.
Bryan Ortenzio added Penn’s third win so far in the early goings of the tournament, scoring a 12-2 major decision over Northern State’s Rick Schilley. Ortenzio was the aggressor in the early portion of the match, scoring two points with a takedown 12 seconds into the bout. He added a second takedown with 33 ticks remaining in the first period after a good shot to the leg and then some scrambling which led to Ortenzio circling around to lock in two. After a quick escape to start the second period, Ortenzio added two more points with a shot to the right leg, taking a 7-1 lead into the third period. Ortenzio locked in a half-nelson and again circled around for two points early in the third. After Schilley escaped, Ortenzio scored another takedown with 11 seconds left. Riding time added another point and the final score of 12-2.
Still awaiting results of who Peterkin and Ortenzio will wrestle in the next round. Wrestling is taking place at 141 right now and Penn is off until Cesar Grajales takes to the mat at 149 pounds.
10:59 a.m. PST Cesar Grajales advances with a tough 3-2 win over Walter Peppelman of Harvard. Neither man was able to score in the first period despite many attempts by both wrestlers. Peppelman scored first in the second period, escaping from bottom to take a 1-0 lead. More scrambling at the edge of the mat near the end of the second frame came close to points for both men, but Grajales entered the third trailing, 1-0.
In the third period, Grajales took a while to escape, but did so with 48 seconds to go. He then added a takedown with 12 seconds left for a 3-1 lead. Peppelman escaped with six seconds remaining, but couldn’t score again and Grajales moves on.
11:25 a.m. PST Two more Penn wrestlers have advanced past the first round. Matt Dragon, the ninth seed at 157 pounds advances with a 6-0 win over Wade Eldridge of Utah Valley. Dragon got the first point of the match when Eldridge was called for fleeing the mat. With a 1-0 lead after one, Dragon escaped and then added a takedown in the second for a 4-0 lead. Starting at neutral in the third, Dragon scored a second takedown with two seconds remaining to move on. He will wrestle the eighth seed, Kurt Kinser of Indiana.
Zack Shanaman, the fourth seed at 165, scored a major decision over West Virginia’s Christian Mory to advance to the second round. Shanaman attacked right off the whistle, scoring a takedown nine second in and adding three back points immediately after. After a scoreless second period that saw Mory ride Shanaman the full two minutes, Penn’s wrestler opened things up in the third period. With a minute and a half to go, Shanaman shot to the right leg and then swept out the left one for two points. After Mory escaped, Shanaman shot again with little time remaining and added two more points at the buzzer. His 2:11 of riding time gave him the major.
12:39 p.m. PST The first round is complete for Penn and six of Penn’s nine wrestlers have advanced to the second round. Trey McLean just moved on with a pinfall win over Cumberland’s B.J. Stewart. McLean dominated throughout the match, scoring four takedowns before catching Stewart on his back for the pin.
Andrew Coles (174), Thomas Shovlin (184) and Dan Zander (197) each lost their first round match and will move to wrestlebacks. Coles lost, 8-4, to Wisconsin’s Travis Rutt, the 11th seed. Shovlin fell, 6-3, to Wisconsin’s Eric Bugenhagen. Zander led early against Cal State-Fullerton’s John Drake before dropping a 9-3 decision.
Looking ahead to the next round in the championship bracket, here is what Penn has to look forward to:
125 Peterkin vs. Purdue’s Akif Eran
133 Ortenzio vs. #6 Matt Fisk of Lehigh
149 Grajales vs. #12 Matt Dunn of Columbia
157 Dragon vs. #8 Kurt Kinser of Indiana
165 Shanaman vs. Matt Epperly of Virginia Tech
285 McLean vs. TBA
Wrestlebacks have started at the lower weights and the matchups for the Quakers in those brackets include:
174 Coles vs. Jason Points (Cal St.-Bakersfield)
184 Shovlin vs. Western Wyoming’s Tyson Anderson
197 Zander vs. TBA
I will be back with more info on McLean's and Zander's matches as it comes available. Full updated brackets can be found at www.thewrestlingmall.com as well.
1:19 p.m. PST Andrew Coles just pinned Jason Points 2:33 into his first round of consolation wrestlebacks. Points had scored first with a single leg that he swept into a takedown. Coles escaped then scored a takedown of his own to take a 3-2 lead. After the two went out of bounds, Coles rolled Points onto his back from the restart and held his shoulders to the mat for the pinfall to stay alive.
Championship rounds are aboutto begin again. Rollie Peterkin is on deck on mat 7 with Purdue's Akif Eren waiting.
2:08 p.m. PST We are through the second rounds at 125 and 133. Rollie Peterkin won a 7-2 decision over Akif Eren of Purdue to advance to the quarterfinals. Eren scored the first takedown of the match early in the first, but Peterkin quickly escaped to get back to 2-1. With 1:46 to go in the first, Peterkin scored on the right leg and rode him out for the rest of the period for a sizeable riding time advantage. In the second, stalemates were the norm for the beginning of the period until Peterkin scored by hooking both arms and pulling Eren down to the mat. In the third, Peterkin escaped at the start and held on for the 7-2 win. He will face the eighth seed, Ben Kjar of Utah Valley State.
Bryan Ortenzio was eliminated by EIWA rival Matt Fisk of Leigh, 4-2. Fisk, the sixth seed, scored the first point via escape in the second period after both men went scoreless in the first. Fisk then shot to the left leg with a single and pulled in the right one for the takedown halfway through the period. In the third period, Ortenzio started on bottom and scored with a reversal after rolling through a tilt attempt from Fisk. Lehigh’s grappler was able to escape immediately for the 4-2 win as late shots from Ortenzio were unsuccessful.
Cesar Grajales is up next...
3:01 p.m. PST Three more second round matches are in the books and Penn has two more wrestlers through to this evening’s quarterfinals. Cesar Grajales defeated Ivy League foe Matt Dunn of Columbia via major decision, 10-2. A high crotch midway through the period started the scoring. Dunn was able to escape and we headed to the second period with Grajales up, 2-1. In the second, after Dunn escaped, Grajales took him down with a minute to go via a second high crotch. Grajales was able to get tilt on Dunn, scoring three back points. In the third, Grajales started on bottom and reversed for two more points. 1:24 of riding time gave him the 10-2 win. Grajales, the fifth seed, will meet 13th-seeded Peter Yates of Virginia Tech in the quarterfinals.
Grajales is joined by Zack Shanaman in the quarterfinals. Shanaman defeated Matt Epperly of Virginia Tech, 6-3, at 165 pounds to advance. Epperly started the scoring with a takedown on the edge of the mat in the first period. Shanaman did escape to make the score 2-1 after one. In the second, Epperly escaped after some good scrambling to up his lead to 3-1. Shanaman responded with a takedown in front of the Penn corner with 18 seconds remaining in the period. Shanaman started on bottom in the third and escaped with 1:37 left to take his first lead of the match. He then sealed the win with a takedown with three seconds remaining in the bout.
Matt Dragon was unable to defeat Kurt Kinser of Indiana at 157 pounds, falling 5-3. The difference in the match can be linked to two penalty points Dragon gave up in the first period. First, he was called for a technical violation for fleeing the mat. Then he was called for his second stalling warning of the period, giving Kinser a 2-0 lead. Kinser escaped to start the second, upping his lead to 3-0. Dragon managed a takedown to close the gap before the end of the second. He tied the match with a rolling escape in the third period before Kinser took the bout with a takedown 15 seconds shy of the buzzer.
3:39 p.m. PST A look at the wrestlebacks shows four Penn competitors still in action.
Andrew Coles has won twice, his pin over Points and a 5-2 decision over Todd Noel of Cal State-Fullerton. After a scoreless first period, Coles rode straight through the second period for two minutes of riding time. In the third, Noel opted for an optional escape, and Coles took a 1-0 lead. Noel took Coles down, but still needed more points to overcome the riding time so Coles was allowed to escape again. It was Coles, however, who scored the last takedown, scoring two points with four seconds left for the 5-2 win.
Dan Zander is about to have his first consolation match at 197 and will take on Brent Fosheim of Northern State.
Bryan Ortenzio will take on Cory Dunn of Sacred Heart at 133 pounds and Matt Dragon will wrestle either Noomis Jones of Adams State or Justin Curtice of Western Wyoming.
Thomas Shovlin withdrew from consolation matches with an injury.
4:01 p.m. PST Trey McLean was eliminated from the championship bracket in 2:08 as the seventh seed, Tucker Lane of Nebraska took him down and pinned McLean’s shoulders to the mat. He moves on to wrestlebacks.
In the consolation round, Dan Zander scored a 8-6 decision over Brent Fosheim of Northern State. Zander broke a 3-3 tie in the second period with a reversal, added a takedown and a riding time point to move on.
5:49 p.m. PST Sorry for the length between posts, but we had a lot of consolation matches going on and Penn was in on many of them.
Bryan Ortenzio has wrestled twice and won two bouts. He defeated Sacred Heart’s Cory Dunn, 3-2 on an escape in the third period in his first consolation bout. He rolled through an attempted turn from Dunn to score the deciding point.
In his second wrestleback bout, he defeated Marques Bravo of Western State, 6-2. He picked up two takedowns and an escape to go with riding time for the win. His best takedown of the match was a half-nelson he hooked in which led to two points early in the first period.
Matt Dragon won two wrestleback matches, defeating Noomis Jones of Adams State via pinfall at the 5:57 mark of the match. He was leading 8-3 at the time. In his second round of wrestlebacks, he defeated Ben Jordan of Wisconsin, 9-7. Dragon opened up a 5-0 lead in the first off a takedown and a three-point nearfall and held on for the win.
Penn’s other three competitors in wrestlebacks have been eliminated. Dan Zander was pinned by Cornell’s Cam Simaz in 4:12 at 197 pounds while Trey McLean was pinned by Cornell’s Tyler Moore in 2:34. Andrew Coles was defeated by Dickinson’s Shane Bennett, 7-4.
We will be moving on to the championship quarterfinals starting at 7 p.m. PST. Here are the matchups involving Penn wrestlers:
125 - #1 Rollie Peterkin vs. #8 Ben Kjar (Utah State)
149 - #5 Cesar Grajales vs. #13 Peter Yates (Virginia Tech)
165 - #4 Zack Shanaman vs. #5 Andy Rendos (Bucknell)
Ortenzio and Dragon are done for the day and will wrestle tomorrow morning. I will pass along their opponents when I have them.
6:52 p.m. Wrestlers are back on the mats warming up for the quarterfinals. Here is a quick look at the matchups featuring Penn wrestlers.
At 125, Rollie Peterkin, the number one seed in the tournament will wrestle eighth-seeded Ben Kjar of Utah Valley. Both wrestlers are ranked in InterMat’s polls, with Peterkin coming in at No. 6 and Kjar at No. 20. Kjar has won both his bouts in the tournament by a combined score of 28-4 while Peterkin has scored 17 points to his opponents’ four.
At 149, Cesar Grajales and Virginia Tech’s Peter Yates will meet up. Yates upset fourth-seeded Jake Patascil of Purdue in the second round to earn his spot in the quarters. Grajales has defeated two EIWA and Ivy League rivals to get to the quarters, scoring a 3-2 win over Harvard’s Walt Peppelman in the first round and a 10-2 major over Columbia’s Matt Dunn in round two.
At 165, Zack Shanaman will take on Andy Rendos of Bucknell. Rendos is the fifth seed while Shanaman is seeded fourth.
7:09 p.m. Rollie Peterkin is back in the semifinals at the Cliff Keen Invitational after a 9-4 decision win over Ben Kjar of Utah Valley. Peterkin opened up the scoring with a takedown 33 seconds into the match which he immediately converted into three back points for a 5-0 lead. Peterkin rode him out for the rest of the period, building a riding time advantage that gave him an extra point in the end. Neither man scored in the second after Kjar chose neutral for the period. A few close shots from each wrestler made the ending moments of the period exciting, but neither came real close to scoring.
In the third, Peterkin escaped to add to his lead. Kjar added two takedowns in desperation, but Peterkin did not allow him to close the gap, taking the win and moving on. He will wrestle Virginia Tech’s Jarrod Garnett in Saturday’s semis.
7:45 p.m. PST The Penn portion of the quarterfinals is over and Rollie Peterkin will have one friendly face joining him in the semis on Saturday. Cesar Grajales defeated Peter Yates, 4-3, in a quarterfinal bout at 149. Grajales scored a takedown with 1:14 to go in the first period after going in with a high crotch on the left leg and pulling in the right one for two points. An escape from Yates made the score 2-1 after one. Yates escaped again in the second period to tie the bout the only score of the second frame. In the third, Cesar took a two-point lead with an escape from bottom with :57 to go in the bout. Yates did manage to escape to get back within one point, but Grajales held on for the win. He will take on Darrion Caldwell from N.C. State. Caldwell is the top seed at 149 in the tournament and an All-American last season, finishing fifth at the NCAA Championships.
Zack Shanaman bowed out of the championship bracket with a 5-1 loss to Andy Rendos of Bucknell. Neither man scored in the first and Rendos picked up the first point with an escape in the second. Shanaman chose bottom to start the third and could not manage an escape. Rendos was able to turn Shanaman late in the bout for three back points. A late escape was not enough and riding time gave Rendos the 5-1 decision.
That is all from Sin City tonight. We will be back at 9 a.m. PST tomorrow with consolation matches. A full recap of today will appear on www.PennAthletics.com shortly.