|#7 IOWA at #1 PENN STATE|
|DATE||Saturday | 7:15 p.m. CT|
|LOCATION||University Park, Pennsylvania | Bryce Jordan Center (15,261)|
|RADIO | LISTEN||Hawkeye All-Access | iHeartRadio|
|ONLINE/MOBILE VIDEO||BTN2Go | FloWrestling|
|LIVE UPDATES||@IowaWRLive | trackwrestling|
ON THE MAT
The seventh-ranked University of Iowa wrestling team travels to University Park, Pennsylvania, to face top-ranked Penn State on Saturday at 7:15 p.m. (CT) at the Bryce Jordan Center.
THE SERIES — PENN STATE
Iowa leads the all-time series 27-9-2. The Hawkeyes have won six of the last nine meetings, but Penn State won the most recent meeting, 26-11, last year in Iowa City.
The Hawkeyes are 12-4-1 all-time at University Park. The Hawkeyes won the last meeting at Penn State, also at the Bryce Jordan Center, 18-12, on Feb. 8. 2015.
PA IN IA
The Hawkeyes probable lineup includes three Pennsylvania natives. Spencer Lee and Michael Kemerer both attended Franklin Regional High School in Murrysville, Pennsylvania, and Kaleb Young attended Punxsutawney High School in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania.
Lee was a three-time high school state champion from 2014-16. He suffered his only high school loss in the state finals in 2017.
Kemerer was a three-time state runner-up before climbing to the top of the podium as a senior in 2015. He finished his senior season undefeated.
Young won a state title in 2016 after consecutive fifth and fourth place finishes his sophomore and junior seasons.
All three wrestlers trained at Young Guns Wrestling, a Pennsylvania wrestling club directed by former Hawkeye Jody Strittmatter.
Iowa has three wrestlers entering Saturday’s dual with undefeated records. They include Brandon Sorensen (18-0), Michael Kemerer (18-0), and Alex Marinelli (12-0).
In the history of Iowa wrestling, 15 wrestlers have finished the season with a perfect record (minimum 20 matches). Four of those wrestlers were able to perform the feat twice. They include Mark Ironside, Lincoln McIlravy, T.J. Williams and Jim Zalesky. Iowa coaches Tom Brands and Terry Brands are among the 15 wrestlers. Tom went 45-0 in 1990-91 and Terry went 35-0 in 1991-92.
SORENSEN’S HOT START
Senior Brandon Sorensen, ranked No. 2 at 149 pounds, has opened the season with 18 straight wins, including three technical falls, three major decisions, and six falls.
This is the second time in three years Sorensen has opened the season with at least 18 consecutive wins. He started the 2015-16 season with 25 straight wins, a career-best winning streak. He opened the 2016-17 season with 17 straight wins.
Sorensen is 33-1 all-time in Big Ten duals. His lone loss was a 9-8 decision to Zain Retherford in the second tiebreaker last season at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
Sorensen is the lone senior in a young lineup. He has 59 career dual starts. Junior Sam Stoll ranks second on the team with 31 career dual starts.
LEE AND MARINELLI CLIMB RANKINGS
True freshman Spencer Lee and redshirt freshman Alex Marinelli have steadily climbed the national rankings since entering the Iowa lineup.
Lee made his Hawkeye debut Jan. 5 against Michigan State and opened the dual with a fall in 46 seconds against Kayvon Foley at 125 pounds. He is 12-1 with four falls, five technical falls, and seven wins over ranked opponents. He debuted in the rankings Jan. 9 at No. 9. He has since moved up to No. 3 (Intermat).
Marinelli made his collegiate debut Dec. 8 at Rutgers. He has since gone 12-0 with two pins, five wins over ranked opponents, and winning the Midlands championship at 165 pounds. He entered the Intermat rankings Dec. 12 at No. 13. He has since climbed to No. 7. He is ranked No. 4 by WIN Magazine.
22 STRAIGHT FOR KEMERER
Sophomore Michael Kemerer has won a career-best 22 straight matches dating back to last season’s NCAA tournament. Kemerer is 18-0 this season with seven pins. Kemerer had four pins all of last season in 36 matches. He has twice this season been named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week.
Five of his seven falls have come in the first period. Kemerer earned the Most Pins/Fastest Time award at the 2017 Midlands Championships. He pinned four opponents in a total of 9:54.
Kemerer is 18-0 for the second straight season. He opened his redshirt freshman year with 19 consecutive wins.
Redshirt freshman Alex Marinelli and North Carolina State’s Hayden Hidlay (redshirt freshman) are the only two freshmen (redshirt and true) still undefeated in all weight classes (minimum 10 matches). Marinelli is 12-0 and ranked No. 7 at 165 by Intermat. Hidlay is 17-0 and ranked No. 3 at 157.
HEAVY LIFTHING LIGHTWEIGHTS
Tom Brands has 203 wins in 225 duals since taking over the Iowa program in 2006-07. In those 225 duals, the Hawkeyes’ 125-pounders have a combined record o 201-24 (.893).
Iowa’s overall dual meet record is 998-230-31 (.799) in 108 seasons. The University of Iowa would be the fourth team in NCAA history to reach 1,000 program wins (Oklahoma State, Iowa State, Oregon State).
The Hawkeyes have won 23 national titles and 35 Big Ten titles. Iowa’s 54 NCAA Champions have won a total of 82 NCAA individual titles, crowning six three-time and 16 two-time champions. The Hawkeyes’ 112 Big Ten champions have combined for 199 conference titles. There have been seven four-time, 18 three-time, and 30 two-time Big Ten champions from Iowa.
Iowa’s 154 All-Americans have earned All-America status 324 times, including 19 four-time, 37 three-time and 39 two-time honorees.
NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION… WELCOME ALL CHALLENGERS
Penn State represents Iowa’s sixth consecutive ranked opponent. The Hawkeyes have won three of the last five, topping No. 3 Oklahoma State, No. 18 Minnesota, and No. 17 Northwestern. Iowa’s two losses have been to No. 2 Ohio State and No. 7 Michigan.
The Hawkeyes are 6-2 this year against ranked opponents.