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March 17, 2018

Vincenzo Joseph

Cleveland, Ohio


THE MODERATOR: We're joined by the 2018 NCAA Division I national champion at 165 pounds, Vincenzo Joseph, of Penn State.

Q. Would you say -- in the Big Ten match he sort of controlled the pace -- this time looks like you had that strategy. Would you say that's accurate and how did you pull that off?
VINCENZO JOSEPH: Yeah, at Big Tens I felt like I was a little too relaxed. This match I kind of wanted to come out aggressive, push the pace a little bit, make it work a little bit in my favor. That's what I did.

Q. What's different from this national championship or last year's or what was similar?
VINCENZO JOSEPH: I think they were both kind of similar. We both came out aggressive, trying to score. He got on my legs a few times. I was kind of swatting his a little bit. And we came up, our (indiscernible) where we both are pretty good there. So it's a good clash.

And pretty much the same as last year, just two guys wrestling hard. I was able to get two quick back points today, which really helped out.

Q. Seemed like almost despite you coming in as the returning national champion you were kind of the underdog despite having that -- did that go through your mind at all, you lost to him in the Big Tens, you had to prove yourself again yet in the finals?
VINCENZO JOSEPH: No, I'm not trying to prove myself to anybody. If I'm trying to prove myself it's trying to prove myself to myself, really. I was just thinking that before the match that I was like I was nervous.

I'm never -- I rarely go in a match like -- a lot of people, like, I'm going to win this match, I'm going to win this match. I considered all the outcomes before I wrestle and it helps me stay calm and relaxed knowing that whether you win or lose everything is the same after. It's just the sport.

Q. After seeing Zain and Jason win like they did, is it sort of like a snowball rolling downhill? You go out there, wanted to keep the momentum going?
VINCENZO JOSEPH: Not really. I was confident that both those guys would win their matches in a fairly dominant way, which they did. And like I just said before, I do it, I wrestle for me, and by me wrestling for me it helps the team and that's what all of our guys do. That's how (indiscernible) for my teammates, I'm happy when they win. But it all comes down to yourself, really.

Q. What was the celebration you did there at the end of the match?
VINCENZO JOSEPH: That's between me and some of my friends. Just keep it that way.

Q. We like to call those 50/50 positions when you get those body locks. Why have you been so successful against Martinez especially when you get to those positions?
VINCENZO JOSEPH: I'm confident there. Somebody asked me after I took a loss to Alex Marinelli if I would stop feeling for those type of positions. And I said no, because that's who I am and I'm just going to keep being who I am.


FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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