With 2010 runner-up Robert Skolik leading the way, Huntington enjoyed the only perfect day on the boys side, cementing its prohibitive favorite role. The Highlander girls also had a perfect day, but so did rival Parkersburg and Washington.
George Washington's four-year reign as the boys champ appears to be over. The Patriots scored four points to Huntington's six, but that doesn't tell the story. This does: The Patriots suffered quarterfinal losses at No. 1 and No. 3 singles, losing six potential points in the process.
GW's Colton Murphy lost to Martinsburg's Grant Davis at No. 1 and Ryan Massinople fell to Joe Holland of Parkersburg South at No. 3. Zach Koenig advanced to today's semifinals at No. 2.
"It was new for our kids," said GW coach Bob White. "I was hopeful that Colton could have gotten that second match, and he had a tough match with the Martinsburg kid. Ryan, he had beaten that boy earlier - it was tight. I knew it was going to be a tough match.
"So those were key for us. When you're thinking points, or points you don't get now, I think it's going to be hard to catch up with Huntington."
Davis faces Skolik in the No. 1 semifinals, with Capital's Joe Michael facing Hurricane's Reid Bailey in the other one. The Redskins also scored four points, with Alex Clay making the semifinals at No. 2.
"This is the strongest one and two group that I've had, and I started in '98," said coach Glenna Ragle.
In girls action, defending champion Parkersburg has six points to five for Huntington and Washington of the Eastern Panhandle. The Big Reds have the extra point because they had to play the first round of the No. 1 doubles after losing to Huntington in the regional final. The Highlanders had a bye, as did Washington.
At No. 1 singles, Huntington freshman Cassie Mercer and Cabell Midland senior Stephanie Fox breezed into the semifinals on the opposite ends of the bracket. Mercer plays Parkersburg's Alex Barr today, while Fox draws Washington's Katelyn Mumaw.
The three top teams also landed in the No. 2 and No. 3 singles semifinal, but only Huntington has an entrant in the four-person No. 4 bracket, which begins play today.
George Washington, not long removed from a state championship run, is showing its youth with a single point. Katie White won a match at No. 1 before falling to Mumaw.
The Patriots have three doubles teams and No. 4 singles Anna Prokity playing today. St. Albans has a No. 2 doubles team left after the No. 1 tandem of Mary Beth Bulriss and Haley Adkins lost a tense 9-7 match to University's Ally and Alyssa Rees.
Reach Doug Smock at 304-348-5130 or dougsm...@wvgazette.com.