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HHS edges Midland

Jan. 10, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

ONA -- Huntington High defeated Cabell Midland, 43-28, in the annual wrestling dual between the Cabell County rivals Wednesday night at Cabell Midland.

Talk to Highlanders coach Rob Archer after the match, it would be difficult to come up with the conclusion the Highlanders made it three straight wins in this series to retain possession of the Superintendent'c Cup.

"They outhustled us 100 percent," a disappointed Archer said before he met with his team in the auxiliary gym. "We looked flat, like we wanted to be somewhere else. They deserved to win."

Huntington High came in ranked No. 1 in Class AAA and Cabell Midland ninth. The Highlanders had four wrestlers ranked No. 1 in their weight class and one at No. 2 in the latest West Virginia Coaches Association rankings.

The Knights have one ranked wrestler, Nathan Jefferson at 220. Yet, the two teams went 6-6 in matches with Huntington getting two other wins by forfeit.

"I enjoyed it," new Cabell Midland coach Ian Semelroth said of his first dual between the county rivals. "We wrestled better. We made fewer mistakes."

The Highlanders recorded four pins and one major decision. The Knights won three by pinfall and also had a major decision.

"In my opinion, we lost," Archer said.

Huntington High came in off a runner-up finish in the 11th Marines.com Battlefield Duals on Saturday at Colonial Forge High School in Stafford, Va. The Knights placed third in the Jackson County Invitational.

Archer said his team had handled the challenges they'd faced up until Wednesday. He struggled to find an answer on what happened Wednesday night.

"I'd need a psychologist for that," he said.

The Highlanders are off until Jan. 18-19 when they compete in the WSAZ Invitational at Big Sandy Superstore Arena. The Knights have a quick turnaround as they'll wrestle in the Winner's Choice tournament this weekend in Fairmont.

"We went hard," said Semelroth, who wrestled in college at Missouri. "We'll work on a few things before we hit the road."

Nick Boone, one of three seniors on the Cabell Midland roster, won his match at 170 by pinfall. It's just his second event of the season. He got a late start due to the Knights reaching the Class AAA championship game in football. He played linebacker. He had to get in necessary practice time and work through a sore knee. He hit the mat for the first time last Saturday at the Spring Valley Duals.

"We wrestled hard as a team," Boone said. "It's no fun to get beat. I've been watching the guys. We're wrestling a lot better."

Boone finishes 4-0 as an individual against the Highlanders. All four wins came by pin.

"I wanted that," he said. "The goal is to keep getting better each week."