Four wrestlers posted unbeaten records as the Oak Hill High School wrestling team opened its 2019-20 season by traveling to Liberty-Raleigh High on Saturday, Dec. 7 compete in the Raider Rumble against 12 other teams.
According to Oak Hill head coach David Vincent, Oak Hill was pooled with Man, Greenbrier East and Webster County/Richwood for the start of the day, with wins over Man and Webster County/Richwood. That moved the Red Devils to the runner-up pool, where they posted wins over PikeView and Liberty.
"We did not have three weight classes filled, which puts us in the hole right away," Vincent said. "(Weight classes) 106, 113 and 120 were forfeits for us.
"We do expect some kids to shift weight classes in the next few weeks to decrease this number to two."
"Being the first tournament, we had some kids that were competing for the first time on a wrestling mat," Vincent said. "Some had to knock a little rust off, as well. For the most part, we were pleased with their overall performances."
On the day, Ashby West, Eli Sedlock and Domonique Johnson all had five individual wins against no defeats, while Elijah Evans went 4-0.
"Ashby has been solid," Vincent said. "I don't think he has stopped since last season. He has competed in North Dakota at Freestyle and Greco Nationals, Super 32s (one of the current toughest national tournaments), Albany, N.Y. High School, and Duals Nationals at Virginia Beach, along with other out-of-state tourneys.
"He has been in front of college coaches, Olympians and collegiate national champions this offseason to help him improve for this year. He came out of the gates running Saturday."
West captured two pins and nine takedowns for his day's work.
"Eli Sedlock had a great day on the mats, as well, with two pins," Vincent said. "He has the attitude that he is there to compete. He doesn't look at who he has and what they've accomplished; he just wants to wrestle. I love this about him."
Sedlock logged wins over a state placer and regional champion Saturday.
"Domonique Johnson made it look easy," said his coach. "He only had one match make it past the first period, with pins for all five matches.
"If you blinked, you may have missed some of his matches."
"Elijah Evans had four wins (three pins)," Vincent said. "He was on his way to a fourth but won via injury default.
"Elijah has put a lot of time in the weight room this offseason. He was definitely stronger than anyone he competed against Saturday."
Also for Oak Hill, Sam Evans and Lucas Goff captured three pins during the event.
"We learned a lot on Saturday," Vincent said. "We saw some great things to build on; we also saw some things we need to fix and work on."
The Red Devils travel to Point Pleasant on Dec. 13 to compete in the Jason Eades Memorial Duals Tournament.
Team scores last weekend were as follows:
• Oak Hill 42, Man 24
• Greenbrier East 45, Oak Hill 27
• Oak Hill 62, Webster County/Richwood 6
• Oak Hill 43, Pikeview 24
• Oak Hill 42, Liberty-Raleigh 27.
— Steve Keenan