Alcoa boys claim district title in playoff
By Will Estep | (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Lately, any tournament or championship in District 4-AA has come down to Christian Academy of Knoxville and Alcoa. It was the same story again on Monday at the Green Meadow Country Club. At least on the boys’ side of the District 4-A/AA golf tournament it was.
Both CAK and Alcoa boys team’s top four golfers came into the clubhouse tied with a 318 combined score after starting off the cold, windy day with an 8 a.m. tee time for an 18-hole day.
The two programs were already locked into the region tournament as both did enough to finish in the top three, but a district title had yet to be claimed. Alcoa picked up its second district title in a row when on the 10th hole of the playoff, the Tornadoes shot a 20 — beating CAK (21) by one stroke.
“We didn’t play very well to tell you the truth,” said Alcoa coach Rob Daugherty. “Our boys are better than they played today. I know that we can play better than we did today. CAK has been sneaking up on us the last three weeks.”
Not only did Alcoa lock up the team championship at Green Meadow, but the Tornadoes also had the medalist in the tournament. Alcoa sophomore Matthew Giles shot a 73 as he was down by five strokes through nine holes and made a comeback to finish three strokes ahead of CAK’s Davis Shore.
“I hit the ball alright,” Giles said. “I just hit a few key shots that I needed to here and there to get there.”
Giles started off with a double bogey on the first hole, but came back to post three birdies on the day. Alcoa junior Hunter Tidwell finished fifth overall and second on the team in the tournament with an 81. Chris Ray and Caden McLaughlin each shot an 82 for Alcoa.
Stone Memorial also advanced to the region tournament by finishing third with a round of 365.
While the Alcoa girls didn’t pick up a district title on the links, the Lady Tornadoes did take home a trophy and advanced to play in next week’s Region 2-A/AA tournament. The tandem of Courtney McGill and Kaila Stanifer shot a combined 228, finishing 12 strokes behind Kingston resulting in a second place finish. CAK finished third with a round of 233.
“I’m really pleased our girls got a trophy,” Daugherty said. “They have been playing so long together, and working so hard.”
McGill finished in second place individually with a round of 107 on the course less than three miles from Alcoa High School. McGill, who is a senior, finished 25 strokes behind CAK’s Sophia Schubert (82). Schubert committed to play golf at Auburn University just last week and is the 41st-ranked girls’ junior golfer in the world.
The second-place finish for McGill enabled her to make her third trip in her four-year career to the region tournament. She finished second but wasn’t completely satisfied.
“Compared to this season, I don’t think I did as well as I could have,” McGill said. “I did better on the last nine holes than the first nine holes. I went to regional’s my freshman year and my junior year, and this year is my senior year and I’m much more excited than I ever was.”
Greenback’s Megan Clarkson did enough to advance to next Monday’s tournament with a round of 116.
The Region 2-A/AA Tournament begins at 9 a.m. Oct. 1 at WindRiver Golf Course in Lenoir City.