Prep golf: Oxford advances to sub-state
by Star staff
Apr 29, 2013 | 4272 views |  0 comments | 17 17 recommendations | email to a friend | print
DECATUR — The Oxford golf team took seven players to the Class 6A, Section 4 boys tournament at Decatur Country Club on Monday, and seven are moving on to the next stage.

The Yellow Jackets used their disappointing showing in last week’s Kelsey Goodwin Memorial as motivation and locked down the section’s fourth spot to next week’s sub-state at Hampton Cove.

The Jackets shot 304. Huntsville (294), Grissom (295) and Decatur (303) nailed down the first three spots.

Oxford sophomore Logan Archer shot 74 and qualified as an individual. Ty Webber also played as an individual and didn’t make the cut, but will join his teammates as an alternate at substate.

“We had a good round,” Oxford coach Darrell Cline said. “We played about as good as we could play.”

It was a far cry from their showing at their own tournament at Cider Ridge, where they finished third and had only one player round in the 70s for two days.

On Monday, they counted a 73 from Cole Abney, 74 from Chandler Allen and 77 from Noah Huckeba. Cody Stewart shot 80 and Tyler Putnam had 81.

“I told them pretty much after the Kelsey Goodwin I wasn’t real pleased after we played and we had a week to figure out what we wanted to do about it,” Cline said. “I guess they weren’t very pleased either.

“They were a lot more focused. They wanted to move on today. They typically do this. They do what they have to do to move on. I’m proud of the how they played.”

Class 3A, Section 4 boys — In Gadsden, Dustin Travis shot 74 to win medalist honors as White Plains qualified its team and two individuals to next week’s sub-state at Silver Lakes.

The Wildcats shot 317 to finish second. Glencoe won the sectional with 308. Piedmont also qualified with a fourth-place 328.

“We played pretty good,” White Plains coach Marcus Harrell said. “We got off to a really rough start, but when they’re taking more than one team if you just hang in there you’ve got a chance to advance.”

In addition to Travis’ 74, the Wildcats also counted 81s from Layton Bussey, Kyle Morrow and Dylan Griggs. Trevor Lane shot 84 to complete the roster.

One of their two individual qualifiers, Zack Cole, also shot 81. Their other, Nathan Gilbert, shot 85.

“We’re hoping to get two rounds in the 70s, but we don’t want to count a round over 83,” Harrell said. “We’ve been playing pretty steady all year and that’s what we’ve been averaging, about 320, but we need to play a little better than that to advance on the state though.”

Class 4A, Section 2 boys — Alexandria qualified three individuals, Jacksonville qualified one and the teams from Clay Central and Cleburne County all advanced from the sectional at Limestone Springs. They advance to the substate at Timber Creek in Daphne.

Reigning county champion Dalton Chandler led the Alexandria contingent with an 80, which was second lowest overall in the wet conditions. Teammates Nick McCain shot 84 and Cole McNeal shot 85. Jacksonville’s Logan Jumper also shot 84 to qualify as an individual.

“I was thinking to myself I’d be on the border line, but I wasn’t,” Chandler said.

Clay Central was led by Conway Shirey’s 80.

Class 6A, Section 3 girls — Tatum Jackson won’t likely forget her first ever hole-in-one or the way she closed out her round in the tournament at Anniston Country Club on Monday.

Jackson, a junior at Mountain Brook, aced the 16th hole at ACC in the middle of an eagle-birdie-eagle-birdie-birdie finish to shoot 2-under-par 70 and win medalist honors by a wide margin. Mountain Brook, the two-time reigning state champs, won the team title by 35 shots.

The 16th, which plays as No. 9 for the members, played 62 yards for the girls, and Johnson lofted a 56-degree wedge to the elevated green.

“I wish I had seen it, though,” she said. “There were some parents up top who started cheering.”

Up to the point of her closing sprint, she said, her round “wasn’t going very well.” She had six bogeys, four of which were three-putts.

But her fortunes changed dramatically on No. 14. She hit the green in 2 and made a putt from 15 feet. On No. 15, she hit an 8-iron from 130 yards to three feet. After the ace, she hit the par-5 17th in two and two-putted and closed it out with an eight-foot birdie on No. 18.

“What did I think? Tatum’s at it again,” Mountain Brook coach Jack Clayton said. “It’s just phenomenal when she does things. When she gets hot, she’s like a firecracker. She’s loaded with confidence anyway, but when she gets on a roll, that’s when she’s got the most confidence.”

Jackson, who has played in the state tournament since the seventh grade, said she planned to play golf in college. She said there were several schools she was seriously considering but declined to identify them.
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