STEUBENVILLE - Two of the more storied wrestling programs in the Ohio Valley met on the mat Wednesday night.
In the end, the Beavers were unable to take down top-seeded Big Red as Steubenville came away with a 46-21 victory over Beaver Local in the Ohio Division II State Dual Meet semifinals at the Crimson Center.
Beaver Local advanced to the semifinals by defeating No. 2 seed Tri-Valley, 42-26, in the quarterfinals. Big Red defeated Cambridge, 54-21.
Beaver Local’s Morley Marsden wrestles against Tri-Valley on Wednesday. (Photo by Aaron?Petchal)
"We wrestled tough," Beaver Local coach Jordan Williams said. "We wrestled well against Tri-Valley. We had some kids banged up, and they gutted it out and got some tough wins. I'm happy about that.
"We beat the No. 2 seed which is nice. It is nice beating these good teams.
"I was happy with our effort in both matches. We wrestled tough. We got after it. I'm proud of the kids. They pushed themselves. They are working hard. They are listening to the coaching the coaches are giving them. This will help us going into the rest of our season, and we have got some big things ahead for our team."
Big Red will now compete in the Region 12 final at 6 p.m. on Wednesday. The winner of that match will advance to the state quarterfinals.
"It is always good to wrestle duals against two pretty good teams from the OVAC in Cambridge and Beaver Local," Steubenville coach Mike Blackburn said. "We knew we had to do this to set up a regional final match against Claymont and a shot at the state dual meet championship.
"We just wrestled a tough dual against Claymont. Hopefully, this sets up an historic dual Wednesday."
The Beavers won nine of the 14 weight classes against the Scotties, but Beaver Local won just five against Big Red.
Despite winning five matches and losing by 25 points, the match between the two OVAC rivals was closer than the final resulted indicated.
Beaver Local led 18-17, but were done in by four big results in Big Red's favor. Not counting those four weight classes, Big Red was out in front 22-21.
Unfortunately for the Beavers, Big Red made the most of those four weight classes as the victors recorded 24 points to gain the upper hand in a big way.
"We knew going in there was going to be a couple of matches that had to go our way," Williams said. "We lost at 132 pounds in a battle. If we would have been able to win those matches, it would have made a big difference in the match.
"Our kids wrestled hard. They did a good job keeping off of their backs, and they were able to secure some team points for us."
Individually for the Beavers, Josh Henderson (113), Jason Keyes (120), Daniel Hasson (145/138), Josh Barber (152/145) and Cody Martsolf (285) all won two matches on the night.
Henderson pinned Tri-Valley's Robby Kaplisky in 1:11 before gaining a victory via forfeit against Big Red.
Keyes and Martsolf each won both of his matches by decision.
Keyes defeated Tri-Valley's Slade Tyson, 8-5, before defeating Big Red's Dakota Goff, 9-5.
Martsolf defeated the Scotties' Tyler Edwards-Frick by a score of 4-3, and he defeated Big Red's Ryan Wood, 3-2.
Hasson got a forfeit victory against the Scotties at 145 before defeating Big Red's Jacob McKitrick by a score of 6-5. Hasson trailed 3-0 in the third period before rallying for the win.
Barber defeated Tri-Valley's Matt Fellows by decision by a score of, 13-11, at 152, and then at 145 he earned a victory via forfeit against Big Red.
Also for Beaver Local, Ron Foster (132), Morley Marsden (160), Daniel Lattanzio (170) and Cody Green (220) all won one match on the night.
Foster, Marsden and Lattanzio all won via pinfall. Green won by decision.
Foster pinned Tri-Valley's William Kaufman in 34 seconds. Marsden pinned the Scotties' Ethan Atkinson in 1:00. Lattanzio pinned Tri-Valley's Dylan Marple in 1:46.
Green defeated the Scotties' Winston Spiker by a score of 8-3.
Big Red's Greg Moray defeated Green by injury default. Green was injured during the match, and he had to be attended to by the trainer. After a few tense minutes, Green was able to get up and walk off the mat. Moray was out in front 7-0 when the match was stopped.
With the split, Beaver Local ends it dual meet season with a record of 11-3.
Beaver Local will be competing at the EOWL Tournament Friday and Saturday at Boardman.