PHS dominates MSACs
Big Reds finish well ahead of runner-up Huntington
“This is a big win for me,” admitted Wade, who used a takedown with five seconds to go to earn a narrow 3-2 decision versus top-ranked Chase Stevens of Spring Valley.
Earlier this month, Stevens defeated the second-ranked Wade, 7-5, during a quad at Ripley.
“It felt really good. It was really exciting,” Wade added. “Finally, I made it to the finals in something. That was definitely my hardest match. It’s the number one and number two guys in the state. That’s how it’s going to be.”
Big Red 152-pounder John Martin Best got a takedown just 12 ticks into his finals match versus Huntington’s A.J. Dempsey and secured an 11-5 decision. It was the third MSAC crown for Best.
“The team did exponentially better than what we’d done in the past and definitely a lot better than we did last year,” said Best, who helped PHS score the most points at the MSAC since 2011 when the red and white won with 211 points.
“It was a great showing overall. I felt like CJ performed the best out of all of us. I think that’s the best any of us has seen CJ wrestle. Overall, it was a great day.”
The Big Reds’ first title came at 120 where Garret Donahue secured the first takedown, led 4-0 after two and finished off a 6-1 victory versus Riverside’s Kaleb Ramirez. Expected No. 2 seed Thomas Hartley of St. Albans missed the match along with a couple of teammates due to the flu.
Also absent for the Red Dragons was expected 126-pound champ Brandon Holt, who would’ve been going after a third career MSAC title. However, George Washington’s Isaiah Isabell defeated Highlander Alex Viars, 10-4.
Head coach Matt Littleton’s Big Reds also got top of the podium finishes at 132 from Hunter Ackerman, at 138 from Bo Moler and at 160 thanks to Chace Mathess pinning GW’s Hayden Stone in 3:30. Ackerman and Spring Valley’s Eian Harper were scoreless after one, but Ackerman took the lead for good with an escape in the second and added a takedown for a 3-0 cushion heading into the third. Moler, who joined Donahue in winning their second MSAC titles, never let Riverside’s Austin Barker get anything going on offense and emerged with a 5-0 decision.
Huntington High head man Rob Archer watched 182-pounder Zane Lanham secure his third career MSAC championship. Lanham went on the offensive from the get-go and built a 12-1 lead before pinning Woodrow Wilson’s Avante Burnett in 2:31.
The Big Reds suffered a pair of finals setbacks when Highlander 113-pounder London Bowen pinned Kage Mathess in 1:15 and at 170 where Huntington’s Clayton Stewart got the mat slapper on Jalen King in 5:12.
Huntington, which finished well ahead of George Washington (97), Riverside (90) and Woodrow Wilson (86) in the team scoring, also got an MSAC crown from 106-pounder Jaishawn Lyles, who never trailed during an 8-3 decision against Cabell Midland’s Luke Jordan.
Highlander backup 220-pounder Tariq Baker reached the finals despite being unseeded, but his run was stopped by Woodrow Wilson’s Ryan Williams, who won via fall in 3:14.
Austin Chapman, who is ranked second in the state at heavyweight behind Parkersburg South’s Louden Haga, got Riverside’s second title thanks to a 10-3 decision versus Kellen Hunt of Cabell Midland.
“I thought we performed really well today,” admitted Littleton, who was named the MSAC Coach of the Year. “Jacob McCune came into this thing unseeded (at 182) and ends up getting third. The rest of things kind of fell how we thought.
“We had that match at 195 in the finals and came away with a win, a big one there, which was awesome for CJ. Even our young guys who had kind of been struggling a little bit this year found some success in things.”
Parkersburg, which saw 106-pounder George Cantwell take third and 126-pounder Levi Westfall get fourth, will return to action when No. 1 Class AA/A Point Pleasant rolls in Wednesday to Memorial Fieldhouse for the Big Reds’ senior night.
Results from the Mountain State
Athletic Conference Championships
TEAM SCORES: Parkersburg 203.5, Huntington 165, George Washington 97, Riverside 90, Woodrow Wilson 86, ST. Albans 69, Cabell Midland 59.5, Spring Valley 48, Capital 22, Hurricane 20, South Charleston 14
Most Outstanding Wrestler: PHS 195-pounder CJ Wade
MSAC Coach of the Year: Matt Littleton (PHS)
106: Jaishawn Lyles (Hunt) d. Luke Jordan (CM), 8-3
113: London Bowen (Hunt) p. Kage Mathess (PHS), 1:15
120: Garret Donahue (PHS) d. Kaleb Ramirez (Riv), 6-1
126: Isaiah Isabell (GW) d. Alex Viars (Hunt), 10-4
132: Hunter Ackerman (PHS) d. Eian Harper (SV), 4-2
138: Bo Moler (PHS) d. Austin Barker (Riv), 5-0
145: Izak Petry (Riv) d. Austin Atkins (SA), 7-2
152: John Martin Best (PHS) d. A.J. Dempsey (Hunt), 11-5
160: Chace Mathess (PHS) p. Hayden Stone (GW), 3:30
170: Clayton Stewart (Hunt) p. Jalen King (PHS), 5:12
182: Zane Lanham (Hunt) p. Avante Burnett (WW), 2:31
195: CJ Wade (PHS) d. Chase Stevens (SV), 3-2
220: Ryan Williams (WW) p. Tariq Baker (Hunt), 3:14
285: Austin Chapman (Riv) d. Kellen Hunt (CM), 10-3
106: George Cantwell (PHS) p. Chris Legg (Cap), 3:06
113: Hannah Anderson (GW) p. Bryce Harrison (SA), 3:42
120: Thomas Hartley (SA) p. Nick Serrano (Hunt), 3:40
126: Isaac Tucker (Hur) d. Levi Westfall (PHS), 4-0
132: Zach Holstion (Riv) d. Austin Conaway (GW), 4-1
138: Joseph Fore (GW) p. Zach Messer (SA) 5:20
145: Treven Tayor (Hur) md. Brock Perry (Cap) 10-0
152: Noah Bailey (SA) d. Vincent McCray (GW), 9-3
160: Zack Stewart (SA) d. Zach Weaver (WW), 2-1
170: Ty Chapman (CM) p. Hezekiah Creasy (WW), 4:19
182: Jacob McCune (PHS) p. Seth Anderson (GW), 0:33
195: Colton Wright (WW) p. Grant Murphy (Hunt), 4:50
220: Prestin Rose (CM) p. Alex Stover (Cap), 0:19
285: Ian Pomeroy (WW) d. Mark Terry (SC), 3-0
NOTE: PHS won the team title for the third straight year.
Next match: Point Pleasant at PHS (senior night), 6 p.m. Wednesday.