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Haught qualifies for state meet

BY JACOB RUDE - sports@h-ponline.com

FORT WAYNE — With a fourth-place finish at 132 pounds at the semi-state at Allen County War Memorial Coliseum on Saturday, Huntington North’s Ricky Haught qualified for next weekend’s state meet in Indianapolis.

In total, six Vikings competed on Saturday with four advancing to the ticket round.

“I think in all, we wrestled pretty good,” Huntington North head coach Neil Teusch said. “Could we have done better? Yeah. But it’s exciting for Ricky to make it through to state. We had a couple kids who were real close and probably could have been there. It’s the state tournament series. Anything can happen at this point. It’s who is on and who is not.”

Haught earned back-to-back decision wins to earn his spot in the state meet, starting with a 12-1 majority decision win over Brandon Wills of Daleville. In the ticket round match-up, Haught squeaked out a narrow 3-2 decision win over East Noble’s Adam Ledesma to qualify for state.

“He kept the matches close, for sure,” Teusch said. “He just kept his head in it the whole time and…finished the takedowns and stuff. He was patient and when opportunities came, he rose to the occasion.”

In the semi-final, Haught fell to Alex Barr of Yorktown by a second-period pin, dropping him to the consolation round. In his final match of the day, Haught fell to Hunter Cottingham of Western by decision, 5-0.

Also advancing to the ticket round for the Vikings on the day were Jacob Hall, Charlie Agnew and Preston Teusch.

Teusch, a 106-pounder, earned a pinfall win in just 35 seconds in his opening match. In round two, however, Teusch fell to Zachary Todd of Yorktown via decision, 6-2.

At 126 pounds, Hall earned a 4-3 decision win over Braxton Rodriguez of Goshen before falling to Kyle Lawson of Bellmont via decision, 8-7.

Agnew also dropped a narrow decision in his ticket-round match-up, losing to Draven Rasler of West Noble, 8-5. That result came after a 6-2 win over Stwewart Mossholder of Oak Hill in round one.

Darry Kuhl (113 pounds) and Christian Graft (220 pounds) each fell in round one.

For the Vikings, having six wrestlers, five of them underclassmen, at the semi-state was a notable experience and accomplishment for Teusch.

“To make it to the semi-state, it’s a big deal,” Teusch said. “With having a freshman in there and all underclassmen except one is huge. Are they disappointed? Yeah. Their goal was to make it to the state tournament and they fell a little bit short.”

The state meet is scheduled to begin to Friday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse before continuing into Saturday. Admission is $8 per session or $20 for both days.