Record-breaking year

Senior wrestler surpasses records on road to IHSAA State Tournament


Photo Contributed by Nathan Smith

Senior Nathan Smith wrestles in the first round of regional on Feb. 5. Smith won both his regional matches and advanced to semi-state, where he will wrestle at New Castle on Feb. 12.

In senior Nathan Smith’s second match of the regional round of the IHSAA State Wrestling Tournament, he secured his 43rd win of his final high school season. This win put him ahead of former SHS wrestlers Damien Rutledge and Robert Clark, who were both tied for the single season win record until this year. 

“It won’t set in now,” Smith said. “I won’t really realize how important it is to me at this moment.” 

The single-season win record isn’t the only one Smith has claimed. As he hit the 132 win mark this year, Smith passed former SHS wrestler Luke Goodwin and jumped to first on the all-time win leaderboard at SHS. 

Smith knows there are athletes rising up in the Southport Middle School program with the chance to break the record he’s set in the coming years, but it is still an outstanding achievement to Smith and his family. 

“Even if he does beat it, I’m still second all-time in a rich school history,” Smith said. “It’s pretty awesome to know that. Me and my dad were looking forward to this pretty much all year.”

For the rest of the SHS wrestling program, head coach Nick Skinner believes these records that Smith has set shows that the program is moving in the right direction.

“It sets new standards and new goals for everyone else to try to achieve,” Skinner said. 

However, Smith and Skinner are looking past these records and at the final step of Smith’s career: the State Championship.

“It won’t mean a whole lot unless we finish what we started,” Skinner said. “Nathan’s two weeks away from winning a state title, we’ve got to stay healthy and perform.”

Tomorrow morning, the four different Semi-State Tournaments will kick off around the state of Indiana. Smith will wrestle his first round of Semi-State at New Castle starting at

If Smith wins his first two matches, he’ll be guaranteed a spot in the State Championship, where he could place first in the state of Indiana for the 106 pound weight class.

“There is a chance,” Smith said. “There are about five or six guys at the top of the weight class that could all beat each other, so it really just comes down to who has the best day.”

If Smith wins the State Title this year, it would put him at 51-0 for the year, undefeated in his senior season. 

“You’d easily be able to make an argument to put me as the best wrestler, and that’s just insane to even think about.”