WINFIELD, W.Va. – Winfield junior Bryce Humphreys has been making his mark on the Generals’ wrestling program as he capped off a 57-0 unbeaten season last weekend with his second straight state championship.
“It felt really good,” Humphreys said. “It didn’t start off, though, like I thought it would have. I got put on my back during the first 10 seconds of my first match and I didn’t think it would go very well, but everything worked out in the end.”
Humphreys won the state championship at the 126-pound weight class last year. This year, he took the title at 132 pounds after beating Huntington’s Chase Childers in the championship match.
“I remember scoring from my feet really quickly and just going right back to it,” Humphreys said. “Every time I got down on the mat, I just got right back up on my feet.”
The win sealed his unbeaten season. In fact, Humphreys was one of three Class AAA state champions to finish the year without a loss, along with 152-pound champion Trapper Hays (49-0) from Parkersburg and 220-pound champion Terrance Fanning (38-0) from Preston.
“It’s nerve racking,” Humphreys said of his unbeaten mark. “It’s one of those things that you’re just waiting for (a loss) to happen and just praying that it doesn’t. In my regional championship match (against Pt. Pleasant’s John Raike), I was down by one or two points at the beginning of the match, then I was down by one with about 10 seconds left and I got a takedown.”
Humphreys is 103-2 over the past two years—numbers that make him a clear favorite at any meet.
“I had hoped to win the state championship again, but I wasn’t completely sure,” Humphreys said. “I had that really close regional match and I knew I could see him again at states, so I was a little nervous about it.”
Regardless, Humphreys won his second straight title and will go for a third as a senior next year. As for his future college opportunities down the road?
“I would like to wrestle in college. That’s the main plan right now—whatever gets college paid for,” he said. “If that doesn’t work out, track is my next option.”
For now, he’s enjoying bringing another state championship to Winfield.
“When we were Class AA, we won state championships in track and basketball, but wrestling didn’t really get a whole lot,” he said. “It’s kind of nice because I get to share it with our girls soccer team—we both won back-to-back titles this year.”