Wrestling, Illinois, David Taylor

Penn State wrestling alumnus David Taylor, four-time All-American and two-time National Champion, is introduced during a break in the match between Penn State and Illinois at Rec Hall on Friday, Feb. 10, 2017.

It seems as though most things affiliated with Penn State wrestling have come in fours recently.

In his 12 years at the helm, Cael Sanderson has won eight national titles — two different stretches of four in a row.

His teams have crowned four individual champions in a year three times, including at this year's NCAA Tournament that concluded just a few weeks ago.

The penchant for fours continued this weekend when the Nittany Lion Wrestling Club sent four of its representatives — Thomas Gilman, Helen Maroulis, David Taylor and Kyle Snyder — to the 2021 Olympics in Tokyo.

Each member of the foursome had to win two out of three matches to punch tickets to Tokyo in the finals of the 2021 Olympic Team Trials.

Two of the matchups — the ones featuring Taylor and Snyder — also pitted two wrestlers who competed for the same schools — Penn State and Ohio State, respectively — against each other.

Here's how the finals of the trials shook out and how each of the four NLWC members became Olympians.

MFS 57 kg: Thomas Gilman (NLWC) v. Vito Arujau (TMWC)

Thomas Gilman was the first Olympian of the night for the NLWC and dispatched current Cornell All-American Vito Arujau two matches to none.

A former Iowa Hawkeye and World silver medalist, Gilman beat Arujau 2-2 on criteria in the first match and then turned around in the second match and made much easier work of Arujau, pinning him in 5:41.

Gilman also had a commanding 10-0 semifinal win over Joe Colon to make it to the finals of the trials.


WFS 57 kg: Helen Maroulis (NLWC) v. Jenna Burkert (SERTC)

The NLWC's newest member, Maroulis is the only one of the club's wrestlers who needed a decisive third match to become an Olympian.

The reigning Olympic gold medalist at 57 kilos, Helen Maroulis won the first match 5-3 before Jenna Burkert came back and evened up the series with a 6-5 win.

Maroulis took the third match after pinning Burkert to become an Olympian for the second time in her career.

MFS 86 kg: David Taylor (NLWC) v. Bo Nickal (NLWC)

It was all but guaranteed the United States’ representative would hail from Penn State.

It was just a matter of who that representative would be.

David Taylor, the 2018 World champion at 86 kilos, shut out fellow former Nittany Lion Bo Nickal in every aspect.

A two-time NCAA champion, Taylor beat Nickal two matches to none and shut Nickal out in both matches, 4-0 and 6-0, respectively.

MFS 97 kg: Kyle Snyder (NLWC) v. Kollin Moore (Ohio RTC)

The second of two finals that pitted two alumni of the same school against each other as Kyle Snyder made his second career Olympic team.

An Olympic gold medalist at 97 kilos in 2016, Snyder beat his former Ohio State teammate Kollin Moore 10-0 in the first match and 5-1 in the second match to punch his ticket.

Snyder joined the NLWC in the fall of 2019 after taking a bronze medal at that year's World championships.

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