Midland got even closer after a Capital three-and-out, moving 69 yards in seven plays to score.
Twice in the possession, Knights QB Coy Pettit rolled one way and threw back across the field to Barnitz for big gains. The first covered 21 yards and the second went 34 yards for a TD to make it 28-26 with 4:08 left in the game.
The Knights tried for a 2-point conversion to tie it, but the play clock just about ran out before they snapped the ball. Walton broke through to sack Pettit, who had rolled to the right.
That wasn't the only big play provided by Walton, who led the Capital defense with 11 solo tackles and three assists, including 51/2 for losses. Defensive back Tyrell Davis also picked off a pair of passes for the Cougars.
"They've got a good defense,'' said Midland coach Luke Salmons. "We had the ball early on their side of the field and didn't do great there.''
Capital managed to hold the Knights to 201 yards rushing, less than half their pregame average of 453. That was without senior linebacker Jonathan Pittman, who couldn't go because of an ankle injury, and without senior defensive back-running back James Richmond, who sat out on what Carpenter called a "sabbatical.''
"We played well with two young linebackers in there,'' Carpenter said. "Gosh, that was great. Pittman was [on the sideline] calling plays with me.''
Capital won despite getting little from its passing game, as Pratt went 3 of 14 for 29 yards.
Salmons was wary of Capital's breakaway ability, and that rang true with Haley TD runs of 70, 64 and 31 yards and Nazario adding two of 33 and 25 yards. Nazario finished with 87 yards on eight totes.
"They made a lot of big plays,'' Salmons said. "We've got to eliminate the big plays. We played good enough to win. We were just behind the 8-ball, just small things.''
Barnitz ran for 58 yards for the Knights and caught all three of the team's completions for 60 yards. Dontae Hendricks returned a kickoff 92 yards for a score.
Midland meets another top-10 team next week when it hosts George Washington. Woodrow Wilson visits Capital next Friday.
Reach Rick Ryan at 304-348-5175 or rickr...@wvgazette.com.