Prep Golf: Mustangs 9th after first day of 3A Championships
By Mike London
SOUTHERN PINES — It was a challenging first day for East Rowan golfers in the 3A State Championships being conducted at Longleaf Golf & Family Club.
Fourth last year and state runner-up the two seasons prior to that, the Mustangs shot 327 on Monday and stand ninth in the 12-team field.
“My younger players struggled some today,” East coach Rhett Teems said. “The greens were fast. The pin placements were tough.”
Charlotte Catholic shot 305 for the first-round lead in the 36-hole event. Catholic’s Cougars lead Clayton and Marvin Ridge by nine shots.
East has the potential to move up a lot of places today. Fourth-place Mount Tabor is just seven shots ahead of the Mustangs.
Veteran Bryson Sprinkle, the North Piedmont Conference Player of the Year, led the charge for the Mustangs, Starting on the back side, he made the turn at 40, but he shot 35 on the front. He made three of his four birdies in a flurry on 4, 6 and 8, and he didn’t have any double bogeys. He also birdied No. 16.
Sprinkle’s 3-over 75 kept him in contention for individual honors. He’s tied for fourth, just two shots back of the leader, Burlington Williams’ Garrett Clark, who carded a 1-over 73.
“Bryson played great in some difficult conditions,” Teems said.
William Garland, Rowan County champion, also played steady. Garland shot 79, making birdies on No. 5 and No. 12. He had one double bogey. Like Sprinkle he was sharper on the front side. He made the turn at 42 but shot 37 for his last nine holes. He’s tied for 27th.
Colby Patterson, the freshman who led East in the regional, suffered a couple of double bogeys but finished strong and turned in an 86. He’s tied for 62nd.
Alex Miller and Austin Miller got off to shaky starts with triple bogeys on No. 10. Both rallied enough to card 87s. They’re tied for 68th in a field of 84.
“Tuesday will be a new day,” Teems. “Hopefully, we’ll play better as a team.”
East will be starting on the front nine this morning, beginning at 10:10 a.m. Sprinkle will tee off last for the Mustangs at 10:50 a.m.
In the 2A State Championships at Whispering Pines, Salisbury’s Alex Antosek, competing as an individual, shot 11-over 83 and is tied for 17th.
Antosek shot 40-43. He made 10 pars, but he was hurt by a double bogey on No. 9 and a triple on No. 15.
Salisbury’s Hank Robins shot 49-41 — 90. The youngster had a tough time on the front nine with four double bogeys, but he was very strong on the back side. He’s tied for 44th.
Robins has an early tee time today on No. 1 at 8:54. Antosek will tee off on No. 1 at 11 a.m.
Midway shot 31-over 319 to lead the team competition. Midway’s Logan Patrick shot 1-under 71 for the individual lead.