HUNTINGTON - Buckhannon-Upshur's Seth Cutright will lead the pack of area wrestlers competing in the state wrestling tourney, which begins at 6:30 p.m. today at Big Sandy Arena.
Cutright captured the 152-pound state championship in 2013 but is wrestling at 160 this season. Cutright (40-1) will have plenty of company at the three-day event, as seven other teammates also qualified. They include Brandon Tenney (113), Dakota Linger (145), Daniel Nolte (285), Joey Shreves (120), Tyler Demastes (132). Matt Fair (152) and Jack Garcia (152).
Nolte and Linger both placed fourth at last year's state meet.
The Inter-Mountain file photo
Philip Barbour High School wrestling coaches direct their team during a match earlier this season. The Colts will have five athletes competing in the state tourney, which begins today in Huntington.
Also in Class AAA, Lewis County qualifiers include Corey Thompson (106), Jonah Cruz (113), Chance Stalnaker (152), Kyle Rogers (170), Ryan Carson (195) and Mason Arbogast (220).
Stalnaker, Rogers and Carson all placed first at regionals.
In Class AA-A, Philip Barbour will have five grapplers taking to the mat, including junior Travis Pomp (220), who won the regional title. He will bring a 41-7 record into the tournament.
Other Colt qualifiers include freshman David Murphy (113), senior Ian Nuzum (126), junior James Bell (160) and junior Andrew Daugherty (195). Bell was the regional runner-up.
"I'm looking forward to the competition this weekend," Philip Barbour coach Pete Ferguson said. "Four of the five wrestlers we have going are in the top ten of the state rankings or have been at some point this year, and two of the guys are ranked third
"I'm very excited to see if they can rise to the occasion and finish above what is expected. All of them have worked very hard and I think they are ready to compete at their highest level.
"I expect all of them to contribute to see how high we can place as a team."
Friday's action will get underway at 11:30 a.m. with the finals on tap for Saturday.