HUNTINGTON — The Associated Press just made the already intense Cabell Midland vs. Huntington High rivalry even more interesting.
The Knights girls supplanted the Highlanders atop Class AAAA in the AP girls basketball poll after winning the Mountain State Athletic Conference championship Saturday, during which HHS, now ranked second, won the consolation game.
In the boys poll, Cabell Midland’s 49-42 victory over Huntington High on Thursday apparently didn’t resonate with voters as the Highlanders (9-2) are tied with University for third in Class AAAA and the Knights (10-3) are sixth. HHS beat Cabell Midland 58-50 earlier in the season.
The girls could settle the issue Thursday in the Region IV, Section 1 championship game at Huntington High, but only if Cabell Midland (9-1, 96 points) wins Tuesday against No. 9 Spring Valley (6-5) in the semifinals at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Huntington High. If the Timberwolves knock off the Knights, this would be the first year ever that Cabell Midland, which garnered six first-place votes, and Huntington High, which was No. 1 on four ballots, didn’t play one another.
George Washington (11-3, 78) is third in the girls poll. Wheeling Park (11-2, 67) and Morgantown (10-4, 67) are tied for fourth. Woodrow Wilson (11-4, 53) is sixth, followed by University (9-7, 33), Capital (7-6, 30), Spring Valley (6-4, 13) and Bridgeport (6-4, 12).
Morgantown (13-1, 100) is a unanimous No. 1 in Class AAAA boys. George Washington (10-1, 86) is second, followed in the top five by Huntington High (9-2, 68) University (8-1, 68) and Martinsburg (8-1, 62). Cabell Midland (10-3, 60) heads the second five ahead of Greenbrier East (9-2, 40), Wheeling Park (8-4, 19), South Charleston (10-4, 18) and Princeton (9-2, 9).
Girls Class AAA also features a matchup of top-five teams when No. 3 Huntington St. Joe (10-2, 72) visits fifth-ranked Wayne (9-2, 55) in a sectional opener at 7 p.m. Wednesday.
Fairmont Senior (14-0, 90) is a unanimous No. 1. North Marion (10-0, 76) is second and Nitro (11-1, 64) fourth. Logan (8-3, 41) is sixth, followed by PikeView (7-3, 35), Lincoln County (8-4, 29), Midland Trail (5-0, 18) and East Fairmont (4-3, 13).
In Class AA girls, Parkersburg Catholic (12-0, 88) is No. 1 with eight first-place votes. Wyoming East (6-2, 77) earned one first-place vote and is second. St. Marys, Frankfort, Williamstown, Petersburg, Mingo Central, Charleston Catholic, Summers County and Ritchie County make up the rest of the top 10.
Tolsia (4-5, 20) is ninth in Class A, where three teams split No. 1 votes. Gilmer County (10-4) picked up five top nods and 86 points to take the top spot. Tucker County (12-4, 73) is second. Tug Valley earned two first-place votes to sit third. Webster County and Cameron, which was No. 1 on two ballots, round out the top five. Calhoun County, James Monroe, River View, Tolsia and Sherman round out the top 10.
The boys Class AAA top 10 in order is, Robert C. Byrd, Fairmont Senior, Shady Spring, Nitro, Wheeling Central, Logan, Herbert Hoover, Grafton, Winfield and Clarksburg Notre Dame.
Williamstown is top-ranked in boys Class AA ahead of Charleston Catholic, Poca, Clay County, St. Marys, Ravenswood, Magnolia, Braxton County, Chapmanville and South Harrison.
Tolsia (7-4) is eighth in Class A boys. Man (11-1) is No. 1, followed by James Monroe, Pendleton County, Tug Valley, Clay-Battelle, Webster County, Greenbrier West, Tolsia, Cameron and Tucker County.