Huntersville man wins North Carolina Open at Irish Creek

Published 7:11 pm Thursday, June 7, 2018

KANNAPOLIS — Patrick Cover of Huntersville led wire-to-wire and captured the 54th North Carolina Open, here Thursday at the Club at Irish Creek.

Cover, who just finished at UNC Wilmington, was tied for the lead with two others after Tuesday’s first round, firing a 4-under par 66. He took the lead by himself on Wednesday with a 67 and iced the championship yesterday with another 66 — his total score of 199 winning by four shots over Matt Vick, a professional from Pinehurst (203).

“I just tried to play a competition with myself and tried to see how far in front I could get and see how low I could take it on the course,” said Cover on Thursday. “Now looking forward, this win was a good way to start the summer. I have a lot of big amateur events that I’m getting ready for. I’m just trying to get ready for professional golf.”

During his final collegiate season, Cover helped lead the UNCW to the Colonial Athletic Association championship.

Following Cover and Vick was a three-way tied for third place at 204 — Matt Bova of Bluffton, S.C., Cory Schneider of Powells Point and Tommy Gibson of Mount Airy.

Michael Childress, of Salisbury, was the top scorer from Rowan County, tying for 35th place with a three-round score of 215. Childress had a tough last day (74), following rounds of 70 and 71.

Childress is a soon-to-be freshman at the University of Richmond, following a stellar career at Cannon School in Concord.

The N.C. Open, sponsored by SignArt and presented by Mobipaid, began on Tuesday with a strong field of 152 golfers. After two rounds, the field was cut down to 63 for Thursday’s final day.

Concord’s Walker Cress finished in a tie for eighth place. Cress had a total of 207 with rounds of 70, 68 and 69.  Stephen Carroll, also from Concord, fired a 69 on Thursday to finish at 213, tying for 27th place.

Other Rowan County golfers who played the first two days were: Davis Richards, of South Rowan and N.C. State (74-75); Parker Chavis, of South Rowan and Cape Fear Community College (75-72); Logan Shuping, of East Rowan and East Carolina (77-72); and Andrew Morgan of China Grove (81-75).