STATE?COLLEGE?- Lock Haven University's Jake Kemerer had some business to take care of Sunday at Rec Hall.
The redshirt junior transferred from Penn State to LHU, battled through an injury-riddled season last year for the Bald Eagles and came into the Nittany Lion Open looking to make a statement.
Kemerer put in a solid performance at the Open, going 5-1 and bringing home a third-place finish at 157 pounds for LHU.
"It feels great," Kemerer said. "I had to prove it to myself and I did that today. It was tough losing in the semis, but overall, I am happy with the way I wrestled today. It helps with confidence. I feel like I am getting better as the season goes on and today was just another step forward for me. I am feeling healthy and that is key."
He worked his way into the semifinals of the extremely competitive Nittany Lion Open, picking up a couple of tight victories on his way.
The Bald Eagle downed Sal Mastriani of Virginia Tech, 6-5, and two rounds later, secured his spot in the semifinals with a 5-4 victory over ninth-ranked Scott Winston of Rutgers.
He also picked up two big wins over Eric Nutter (8-1) and Connor Sutton (10-2) en route to his semifinal matchup with returning NCAA All-American Dylan Alton of Penn State.
"(Jake) has a lot of heart," Lock Haven head coach Robbie Waller said. "He believes in himself and works really hard. These are the types of matches you will see at Nationals. The more you see them in the regular season, the more it will prepare you for Nationals."
In the semis, the fifth-ranked Alton picked up a takedown with just two seconds remaining in the first period. The two wrestlers traded escapes in the second and third periods securing the 3-1 victory for Alton.
"You just got to find a way to win those close matches," Waller said. "The more matches Jake gets under his belt, the better he is going to be."
Kemerer was given a forfeit in the third-place match, as his opponent was disqualified from the tournament.
While Kemerer was the lone place-winner for LHU, Waller's squad put together a pretty successful day.
Bobby Rehm and Zach Heffner missed placing by one match each.
Top-ranked Penn State sent nearly its entire roster into action and came away with five champions. Eighteeen of the Nittany Lions' 30 particpants placed.
Penn State's champs were Andrew alton at 149, David Taylor at 165, Matt Brown at 174, Ed Ruth at 184, and Quentin Wright at 197.
None of Penn College's wrestlers placed among the top eight in any of the weight classes. The Wildcats resume dual meet competition Tuesday hosting PSU Fayette.
Finals results:?125: Anthony Zanetta, UA-Pitt 3-2 dec. #2 Nico Megaludis, Penn State; 133: Mason Beckman, UA-Lehigh 3-2 dec. Jimmy Gulibon, UA-Penn State; 141: Devin Carter, UA-Virginia Tech 16-8 maj. dec. Evan Henderson, North Carolina; 149: #6 Andrew Alton, Penn State WBF Augustus Sako, UA-Virginia (2:12); 157: #3 James Fleming, Clarion 9-4 (SV) dec. #5 Dylan Alton, Penn State; 165: #2 David Taylor, Penn State WBF #13 Mark Lewandowski, Buffalo (5:42); 174: #3 Matt Brown, Penn State 7-4 dec. #11 Greg Zannetti, Rutgers; 184: #1 Ed Ruth, Penn State 11-4 dec. #10 Jimmy Sheptock, Maryland; 197: #3 Quentin Wright, Penn State 5-3 (SV) dec. Morgan McIntosh, UA-Penn State; 285: Nick Gqiazdowski, UA-N.C. State 12-1 maj. dec. Jimmy Lawson, Penn State