2019 Clarion Open

Penn State Freshmen Shine At Clarion Open

Penn State Freshmen Shine At Clarion Open

Recap of the 2019 Clarion Open that featured stars from Penn State, Lock Haven, Clarion, and Cleveland State.

Nov 5, 2019 by Brock Hite
Penn State Freshmen Shine At Clarion Open
The Clarion Open kicked off the season for several teams and a ton of redshirts this past Sunday. You can catch up on all the action linked in the FloArena brackets. Here are my four biggest takeaways from the action.

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The Clarion Open kicked off the season for several teams and a ton of redshirts this past Sunday. You can catch up on all the action linked in the FloArena brackets. Here are my four biggest takeaways from the action.

1. Penn State Has Depth

This isn’t news to anyone, but it’s not just the superstars that are redshirting. Joe Lee and Carter Starocci claimed titles at 165 and 174lbs. Both looked to be on the trajectory everyone expected of the top-tier recruits. Michael Beard was second at 197lbs, dropping the championship match to NCAA qualifier Greg Bulsak (Clarion). Beard found some trouble on bottom as many freshmen do when transitioning to the NCAA level, but you can see the skills of a blue-chipper. 

Terrell Barraclough finished third at 149lbs losing only to #4-ranked Brock Zacherl, 3-1. Barraclough doesn’t come with the fanfare of some of the younger guys on Penn State’s roster, but watch his development. He could be searching for podium finishes in the future

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2. Watch Out for Evan Cheek

Cheek is a fifth-year senior who could be fighting for All-American honors Friday night in Minneapolis. Cheek wrestled his first three seasons before redshirting the 2018-19 season. His last outing at the EWL Championships, he took home the title when he pinned an undefeated Brock Zacherl (Clarion). One coach compared Cheek’s mean style to that of Dustin Kilgore this weekend. Cheek dominated the field with two falls, a technical fall, and a major decision en route to the title at 141lbs. Watch for Cheek to climb the rankings throughout the year.


3. Ed Scott Is the Truth

Everyone knows the gap between the highest level of high school and college is closing. More true freshmen are ready to compete right away than ever before. Ed Scott showed he is one of the high schoolers who is ready to compete when he gets to NC State. He blew through his half of the bracket at 149lbs Sunday to set up a finals match with #4-ranked Brock Zacherl (Clarion). While many thought the super senior would overwhelm the high schooler, Scott had other plans. Scott defended a shot putting Zacherl in danger before securing a takedown and two nearfall to take a 5-2 lead on the highly-touted Zacherl. Scott wasn’t able to finish the job as he fell 7-6 on a riding time point. Even in the loss, Scott upgraded his stock with his performance this weekend.

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4. Brock Zacherl is Back

Anytime someone is coming off a major injury you will have questions about how effective they will be in their return. Zacherl didn’t show any signs of the elbow injury that sidelined him during the 2018-19 season. Zacherl won his fifth Clarion Open title in six tries. He faced adversity in the finals as he trailed Ed Scott after two periods. Zacherl used an escape, takedown, and a tough ride to accumulate enough riding time to erase the deficit and take home a 7-6 victory. Zacherl is currently ranked fourth in the FloWrestling college rankings and is eyeing the bracket in Las Vegas at the beginning of December to knock heads some of the top guys in the country.