STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (WTAJ) – Penn State wrestling will have nine wrestlers competing at the NCAA championships in St. Louis.
The tournament kicks off Thursday morning and finishes up Saturday night with the national finals.
This year’s Nittany Lion squad features five freshmen competing in their first NCAA tournament.
Only five weight classes will be competing in the arena at one time. Each round will be split into two sessions to accommodate COVID-19 protocols. The lightweights (125-157) will compete before clearing the arena for the upperweights (165-285).
The full television and streaming information can be found on the NCAA website. Each match will either be streamed or televised by ESPN.
You can find a summation of Penn State wrestlers first-round matchups and seeds below courtesy of Penn State athletics:
125: True freshman Robert Howard (Cranford, N.J.) will be the No. 23 seed at 125. Howard will take on No. 10 Malik Heinselman of Ohio State in his first NCAA tournament bout. Howard earned a trip to NCAAs as a true freshman off a sixth-place finish at the 2021 Big Ten Championships. He is 5-4 overall and 1-4 vs. the field.
133: Junior Roman Bravo-Young (Tucson, Ariz.) will be the No. 2 seed at 133. Bravo-Young will meet No. 31 Sean Carter of Appalachian State in the opening round. Bravo-Young is a two-time All-American and won the 133-pound Big Ten Championships this year. He is 9-0 overall and 4-0 vs. the field.
141: Senior Nick Lee (Evansville, Ind.) is the No. 2 seed at 141. Lee will take on No. 31 Julian Flores of Drexel in the opening round. Lee is a three-time All-American already and was Big Ten runner-up this season. He is 8-1 overall and 5-1 vs. the field.
157: Junior Brady Berge (Mantorville, Minn.) will be the No. 12 seed at 157. Berge takes on No. 21 Andrew Cerniglia of Navy in the opening round. The Lion junior earned his second trip to the NCAA tournament with a sixth-place finish at the 2021 Big Ten Championships. Berge is 8-2 overall and 2-2 vs. the field.
165: Freshman Joe Lee (Evansville, Ind.) is the No. 23 seed at 165. Lee meets No. 10 Travis Wittlake of Oklahoma State in his first NCAA tournament match-up. He punched his ticket to nationals with an eighth-place finish at the Big Ten tournament. Lee is 6-5 overall and 2-4 vs. the field.
174: Freshman Carter Starocci (Erie, Pa.) is the No. 3 seed at 174. Starocci will take face No. 30 Victor Marcelli of Virginia in his first NCAA bout. The Erie-native is coming off a second-place finish at the 2021 Big Ten Championships where he was named the 2021 Big Ten Freshman of the Year. Starocci is 9-2 overall and 4-2 vs. this year’s field.
184: Sophomore Aaron Brooks (Hagerstown, Md.) is the No. 1 seed at 184. Brooks will meet the winner of the No. 33/32 pigtail bout between Joe Accoustie of Sacred Heart and Jhaquan Anderson of George Washington in the first round in St. Louis. The All-American is coming off a second-straight Big Ten title at 184 at the 2021 Big Ten Championships and is 9-0 overall, 5-0 vs. the field.
197: Freshman Michael Beard (Pottstown, Pa.) is the No. 15 seed at 197. He will meet No. 18 Jacob Koser of Navy in the opening round in this, his first NCAA tourney. Beard earned a trip to nationals with a sixth-place finish at the Big Ten tournament and is 9-6 overall, 2-4 vs. the field.
285: Freshman Greg Kerkvliet (Grove Heights, Minn.) is the No. 9 seed at 285. He faces No. 24 Michael McAleavey of The Citadel in his first NCAA tournament match-up. Kerkvliet placed fourth at his first Big Ten Championships, earning a spot in St. Louis. He is 6-2 overall, 2-2 vs. the field.