Southern Regional alum Molinaro repeats as Big Ten wrestling champ

Penn State’s Frank Molinaro, top, tries to pin Minnesota’s Dylan Ness during their 149-pound final at the Big Ten Championships on Sunday in West Lafayette, Ind. Molinaro won by technical fall, 15-0.

Barnegat native Frank Molinaro already was a three-time NCAA All-American wrestler. As of Sunday, he was also a two-time Big Ten Conference champion.

The Southern Regional High School graduate won the 149-pound title and led Penn State University to the team title at the Big Ten Championships in West Lafayette, Ind.

Molinaro, a senior and the top seed at 149, beat Minnesota's Dylan Ness with a 15-0 technical fall in the final. He was one of three Penn State wrestlers to repeat as champions, along with David Taylor (165) and Ed Ruth (174).

Latest Video

The Nittany Lions scored 149 points to beat second-place Minnesota (134).

Molinaro started the tournament by pinning Northwestern's Kaleb Friedly in 2 minutes, 18 seconds. In the semifinals, he beat Purdue's Ivan Lopouchanski with a 15-0 tech fall.

In the final, he used a takedown, a reversal and four near-falls to beat Ness 15-0.

Last year's national runner-up, Molinaro (28-0 this season) will go for a national title and fourth All-American honor at the NCAA championships, which start March 15 in St. Louis.

Molinaro was a three-time state champion at Southern Regional, going 148-6 in his career, and a three-time Press Wrestler of the Year.

He is 113-29 in his career at Penn State.

Stay informed! Sign up to receive top headlines delivered to your inbox each morning.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.