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October 1, 2013

H.S. GOLF: Central’s Nowlin, Miller earn trips to state with strong showing at regional tournaments

LEXINGTON — The Indians put themselves in position to earn a spot in the state tournament for the third-straight season Monday at 9th Region Tournament in Lexington.

But, Scott County found some magic late in a three-team playoff.

Cooper Bergman sank a 12-foot eagle putt on the final round of the extra session, helping the Cardinals edge out Madison Central and Henry Clay.

Clark County shot a 306 to claim its first regional title since 1999.

Billy Tom Sargent of Scott County took medalists honors with a 69.

Zach Miller, Madison Central’s No. 1 player, shot a 70, which tied for second and earned him a spot in the state tournament as an individual.

At the girls 7th Region Tournament Monday at Danville County Club, Central’s Tristyn Nowlin shot a +2, 75, and tied for third place. She also qualifies for this year’s state tournament as an individual.

“It’s good that we got beat on an eagle,” Central coach Tim Stephens said. “I would have hated for our kids to do something wrong. It was an exciting playoff.”

Scott County, Central and Henry Clay all finished with total team scores of 309.

Miller came up with a birdie on his turn in the playoff and after each team’s top three golfers had played the hole Central was -1, while Scott County and Henry Clay were both +1.

But, a double birdie by Central set the stage for a dramatic finish.

“We thought our whole region was pretty evenly matched,” Stephens said. “So, I knew there were probably about six teams who would have a shot to win it.”

Franklin County and LCA finished just three shots behind Scott County, Central and Henry Clay.

Eight teams finished within eight shots of Clark County.

Miller, who is an eighth-grader, led the charge for Central.

He had birdies on 14, 16 and 17 and just missed a birdie putt on 18.

“He’s got a high golf IQ,” Stephens said of Miller. “A lot of that is natural. He’s been around the game a long time. He observes the game and he watches the older players play and how they handle themselves.

Sophomore Carter Skipworth shot a 76, senior Burgess Clark shot a 77, while junior Trent Renfro and sophomore Jordan Adams both shot an 86.

“Zach has just been playing so well these past few weeks,” Stephens said. “We got a good showing from Carter Skipworth and Burgess Clark. They both could have played a little better. We just don’t have the depth we’ve had in the past. But, I’m really excited about next year’s team.”

Berea shot a 356, Madison Southern finished with a total team score of 378 and Model shot a 384.

Nowlin earned her first trip to the state tournament with a solid round Monday in Danville.

She shot a 75 and tied for third place with Madison Saladin of Dunbar. Leslie Ginter of Henry Clay took first place with a 70, while Grace Rose of West Jessamine was second with a 72.

Madison Central finished seventh with a total team score of 369. Henry Clay took the team title with a 309, beating out Boyle County by 20 strokes.

Madison Southern shot a 377, Berea shot a 499 and Model shot a 525.

For Central, Mackenzie Neal shot an 88, Kailey Boyer shot a 99, Mattie Neeley shot a 107 and Paige Stamper shot a 108.

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