Patriots qualify for state

Published 3:00 am Thursday, March 24, 2016

The Pike Golf team’s goal of reaching the state tournament was fulfilled on Monday when their collective score of 351 at the Springwood Tournament at Point University qualified them for a spot at the season ending tournament on April 25-26.

“I am proud of them,” said golf coach Gene Allen. “They worked hard. Hopefully they will continue to get better and better.”

The Patriots had three players shine individually on Monday. Eighth grader Brax Barron shot a career low 80, while two-time state champion Susie Stell shot an 89 and Chris Farrar shot an 87.

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The Patriots have been practicing since the early stages of February and although coach Allen has seen great improvement, he believes there is a lot to be done due to the fact that is roster is full of youth.

“We have been playing for about a month,” Allen said. “We have the potential to shoot a lot better than what we have so far. We are young; I have a sixth grader on my team that is part of my top five. They are pretty excited but they are going to keep going out there and working hard.”

With a lot of hard work and practice, coach Allen believes his team has the potential to shave off 15-20 strokes of their final scores.

To do that the Trojans will plan on working on their game from 100 yards out. Allen believes the Patriots could improve their game the most on and around the greens.

“The biggest thing is chipping and putting,” Allen said. “If you are chipping and putting you can cut a lot of strokes off. It’s not hard to make a par when you can chip it on the green and make one putt. We have to work around the greens.”

Along with the team qualifying for state, the Patriots also have had four players in Barron, Stell, Farrar and Jace Calhoun qualify for state during the first half of the season after breaking 90.

The Patriots spend four days a week practicing at the Troy County Club.

The Patriots have four more tournaments before state, starting on March 28 when they travel to play in a tournament at Indian Hills in Tuscaloosa.