Prep Golf: Lincoln boys beat Boyle
Lincoln County¿s Taylor Edwards watches his approach shot on the 18th hole during Lincoln¿s match with Boyle County on Tuesday at Dix River Country Club. Edwards shot a 47 for the winning Patriots. (Mike Marsee / August 15, 2012)
Sure, the scores could have been lower, and the Patriots believe they will be in time. But those scores were good enough to give the Patriots their first win of the young season, a nine-stroke victory over Boyle County at Dix River Country Club.
“I think our best is still yet to come,” coach David Ledford said. “We’ll feel like we’re playing pretty good if we’re down in the low 160s. We’ve still got a ways to go, but I think we can get there.”
Host Lincoln’s four-man score of 183 in its second match of the season Tuesday was actually five strokes higher than in its opener on the same course, though the Patriots lost that match to East Jessamine.
Zach Johnson, who led the Patriots with a 37, is the Patriots’ No. 1 player and one of two seniors in the five-man lineup. He said it’s a matter of consistency.
“Last year we were pretty consistent, and this year I feel like if we can just get a couple of guys to shoot a good round, then come region we can be right there,” Johnson said.
Last season ended badly for Lincoln with a 12th-place finish in its regional tournament, 43 strokes and six places higher than the Patriots finished in 2010. But they returned three of last year’s top five players: Johnson, junior Taylor Edwards and eighth-grader Roland Taylor.
Ledford said the one constant in the Lincoln lineup is Johnson, who also played in the 2010 regional.
“Zack’s the senior that’s going to real consistent. He shot 38 in the first match and 37 today,” Ledford said. “I feel like he’ll be within a stroke or two of par, and then two through five are all pretty much right there together. I think they can play better than they did today. For whatever reason, I think they still get a little bit nervous. They haven’t had a whole lot of experience.
Johnson has no shortage of experience. He also played in the 2010 regional, and he played in 10 of the 12 tournaments this summer on the Southeast Kentucky Junior Golf Tour, finishing sixth in the player of the year points standings for the boys championship division and winning his division in the tour event at Old Bridge.
“I’ve been playing pretty consistent, just coming out here and working on stuff. I’ve pretty much been playing golf all summer,” he said.
Ledford said all of that practice and play has made a difference in Johnson’s game.
“You can tell that,” he said. “Zack’s the kind of kid that you can watch him play from a hundred yards and not know how well he’s playing. Very little reaction, always calm and level-headed, and that’s important whenever you’re playing golf. You’re going to have some bad holes and bad shots, but how you react to those is extremely important.”
Johnson said he wasn’t thrilled with his 1-over-par round Tuesday, but he wasn’t upset, either.
“I just made a couple mistakes today, but nothing to get too mad about,” he said.
He said he also wasn’t bothered by the fact that junior Taylor Edwards, Lincoln’s No. 2 player, shot 47, and he said the Patriots can make a move toward the top of the region if other players can continue to improve.
“He had a rough day today. He’s usually around 39 or 40,” Johnson said. “If we can get a three and four man shooting good, we should have a chance.”
Boyle’s Dakota Jarman shot 1-under-par 35 to lead all players in Tuesday’s match, and Ben Kendrick was right behind him with a 36. However, Lincoln’s third through fifth players were a combined 49 strokes better than the same players in the Boyle lineup, all of whom are in middle school.
At Dix River C.C., Stanford
BOYLE COUNTY (192) — Dakota Jarman 35, Ben Kendrick 36, Dylan Frederick 59, Will Gibson 62, Hunter Simmons 69.
LINCOLN COUNTY (183) — Zach Johnson 37, Taylor Edwards 47, Hunter Munford 49, Roland Taylor 50, Shade Jacobs 52.
Mercer boys lose
At Lexington, Tyler Bennett shot 44 to lead Mercer County, but the Titans lost by 23 strokes to Sayre at Picadome Golf Course.
Austin Satterly added a 45 for Mercer while Bailey Spalding had 46, Brennen Walton 48 and Ross Weeks 60. Paul Saad led Sayre, which had a 160 total, with a 36.