03/08/11 — Saints win first ECC golf match

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Saints win first ECC golf match

By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on March 8, 2011 1:47 PM

DUDLEY -- Southern Wayne played its best match of the early golf season on the sun-soaked links at Southern Wayne Country Club on Monday afternoon.

The Saints fired a four-man total of 321, which was good enough to beat Triton (337) by 16 strokes and open an early lead in the Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference standings.

Just not as big of a lead as in previous years.

The coaches in the conference voted to go with a points system to determine the team championship this season, much like the NASCAR point system. The Saints earned seven points for their first-place finish and the Hawks grabbed six points.

"The new point system puts an emphasis on winning the most matches, not just winning a couple matches by a lot of strokes," said Southern Wayne head coach Jeremy Joyner. "Today we played well and in years past we would have a pretty good size lead to show for it, but not this season."

Triton's Chris Sherrod earned medalist honors with a 2-under par 69 on Monday.

Southern Wayne sophomore Kyle Best followed closely with a 71 that was ignited by a chip-in birdie on the third hole and a follow up birdie on No. 5.

"Kyle has never shot even par or better in his high school career so I was really proud of him," said Joyner. "I thought my guys gave away a couple strokes late in the match, but as a whole I was very pleased."

Chris Best (81), John Graham (84) and Lance White (85) rounded out the Saints' team total.

C.B. Aycock finished third in the team standings with a 339 total. Cory Freels paced the Golden Falcons with a 79. Dylan Mitchell (82), Michael Fearney (87) and Lawrence Burnett (91) completed the C.B. Aycock tally.

Caleb Jones' round of 81 led Eastern Wayne to a fifth-place finish. Hidematsu Sueki (88), Elliot Best (95) and Carlton Edmunson (106) rounded-out the Warriors total.

"There are a lot of unknowns going into the first conference match of the year," said Eastern Wayne head coach Scott Waller. "I think we learned a lot today and we see where we can improve."

North Lenoir finished in sixth place in the seven-team field with a 382 score. Alex Brownley led the Hawks with a round of 84.

Weather permitting, the ECC teams meet again Thursday at Reedy Creek CC in Johnston County.