by JOHN HOWLEY / sportingpumpkin.com
COLUMBUS — Ava Miller’s journey at the Inaugural OHSAA Girls State Wrestling Tournament got a little bit longer Saturday night.
The Teays Valley junior lost her 105-pound semifinal matchup with Sandusky’s Nikera Johnson 7-3, dropping Miller into Sunday morning’s consolation semifinals. She’ll have two more matches in the morning to determine her place on the podium.
“(Johnson) had good head pressure. I couldn’t really move around,” Miller said. “I was tieing up, but I believe I just tied up a little bit too much. I couldn’t see the takedown; I couldn’t see the shot.
“It messed with my setup. I don’t want to risk taking a crappy shot and then getting stuffed.”
Johnson (34-3), a freshman, had advanced to the semifinal with pins in 3:32 and 2:30.
“(Miller’s) effort was awesome. She was fired up,” TV coach Todd Nace said.” The girl’s defense was good. We did get a takedown later on in the match.
“She’s probably scouted us, and she was staying her distance. She was not pushing into us to let us hit that fireman’s.”
Miller will be back at Ohio State’s Jerome Schottenstein Center when action resumes at 9:30 Sunday morning. If she can get two wins in the morning, she can finish in third place.
“Just get some sleep, get my head right, new mindset. Tomorrow is a new day,” she said.
“In the morning, we’ll be fresh,” Nace said. “She’s going to make weight here in a minute and she’s going to be ready to go in the morning.
“She’s going to learn from this and she’s going to be better for it.”
Miller has a 39-3 record on the season heading into Sunday’s consolation matches.
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