CBA golf team headed to state match
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on May 9, 2006 2:18 PM
MACCLESFIELD -- Hands tucked in their pockets and eyes glued to the leaderboard, the Charles B. Aycock golfers agonizingly watched as tournament officials wrote down each individual score Monday afternoon.
The anticipation grew the longer the Golden Falcons waited.
When perennial powers Wilson Fike and Havelock had submitted all their scorecards, the anticipation turned to concern. Would a four-player total of 310 be good enough to extend Aycock's playoff run?
"If we manage to hang on, I'll have six happy kids," said Golden Falcons coach Jay Westbrook.
Senior Ryan Campbell netted an even-par 71 and emerged one of six competitors to shoot 72 or lower in breezy, misty conditions on the Maccripine Country Club layout. Will Vinson provided a 76 and Jordan Elmore contributed a 79. Reding Pittman completed the Golden Falcons' scoring with an 84.
"It was stressful," said Vinson of the long wait. "I don't think our school has ever made (the state tournament) two years in a row. This is a good feeling."
Wilson Fike, led by two Division I signees, recorded a season-low 287 en route to its fourth consecutive N.C. High School Athletic Association Class 3-A Eastern Regional championship. Brett Emmers, who signed with East Carolina, fashioned a 2-under par 69. John Tyler Griffin, who is headed to Georgia Tech, carded a 1-under 70. Teammates Tommy Evelyn and Carter Ellis each provided a 3-over par 74.
The Golden Demons claimed their fifth regional crown in the past six years.
"We've had a pretty good run of players," said a modest Fike coach Jim Boykin. "I just drive the bus and try to get them to the course on time."
Havelock finished second with a four-player total of 308.
Rob Pate of Northern Nash, Teague Summerlin of White Oak and Chris Joyner of Nash Central each fired a 1-over par 72 and qualified for the state tournament as individuals. The two-day meet is scheduled for next Monday and Tuesday at Fox Fire Golf Course.
Rain from two weekend storms drenched the par-71, 6,298-yard course. The greens turned softer, but parts of the fairways still held water when play began. Tournament officials allowed the golfers to play tree line to tree line, and clean their balls when needed.
"The rain affected a couple of our players a little bit," said Westbrook. "We have two players who like to hit low shots and the (wet ground) kept them getting the roll they normally get. But, you know, everybody played in the same conditions.
"I just told them to go out there and shoot their best round, and be smart."
Campbell collected birdies on the par-3 No. 7 and par-4 No. 15, and added 15 pars.
"The fairways really weren't the best and I was impressed with the greens," said Campbell, who had several one-putts. "I putted really well today, but was nervous coming in. I didn't practice all weekend and couldn't get out.
"My short irons were a little iffy, but they worked out. It was a typical round."
Vinson shot 38 on the front and back nine.
"When you hit your drives and get no roll at all, just have it splat in the mud, that's tough," said Vinson. "When I started off today, I told myself I wasn't going to leave a chip or putt out there. I didn't.
"I can't think of a shot that I could have tried harder or concentrated more on."
Elmore and Pittman, who teed off in the lead group on No. 1, each played a steady round.
Senior Miles Perry recorded an 18-hole round of 77 and led Eastern Wayne to a fourth-place finish at 315. Kyle Ham and Nick Barrow contributed a 78 and 79, respectively. Eric Huetter chipped in with an 82.
The Warriors played at MCC during the regular season and went back for a practice round last Thursday. The rain helped soften the greens, but the rest of the tree-lined course played normal, according to Perry.
"You have to hit the ball straight and play smart approach shots, aim for the middle of the greens," said Perry. "The pin placements weren't bad."
Southern Wayne's Brad Davis and Casey Best also participated among the 70-plus golfers. Davis birdied No. 12 and two-putted for par on holes No. 1 and 2. He finished with a 92.
Best, the valedictorian of the senior class, ended his prep career with a 107.
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