Hilltoppers, Lady Rebels claim district golf crowns

Pat Kenney • Sep 9, 2009 at 12:00 AM

KINGSPORT — A torrential downpour failed to dampen the spirits of the players in Wednesday’s District 1-AAA golf tournament held at Cattails at MeadowView.

With the lead group on the fourth tee, the skies opened up and forced the field to wait 2½ hours before continuing play.

When the final putts were holed, the Science Hill boys captured their 16th district title in the past 18 years.

The Hilltoppers posted a winning score of 303 with Dobyns-Bennett and Tennessee High tied for second at 306.

All three teams advance to the Region 1 tournament to be held Sept. 21 at Clinchview Golf Club in Bean Station.

On the girls’ side, Sullivan South’s dynamic duo of Lacie York and Brianna White posted a 148 to beat Science Hill, which finished second with a 155.

The Dobyns-Bennett girls also qualified for the regional with their third-place score of 189.

York took girls’ medalist honors with a 73.

Science Hill’s Madison Alexander was second with a 74 while White shot 75.

Volunteer senior Lucas Armstrong was the model of consistency on the day, posting nine straight pars to open his round and finishing with a 2-under-par 69 to win the district individual title.

Jace DeVault from Tennessee High was second with a 72 while the Hilltoppers’ Rob Fortune and Zach Botts, along with Sullivan South’s Brandon Worley, were tied for third at 74.

The Hilltoppers were steady on their way to another district victory. “We’re solid from top to bottom,’’ Science Hill coach Josh Carter said. “That’s what it takes this time of year.’’

Early in the round, the D-B boys were struggling. But a 76 from Neil Delwadia and 79 from Taylor Pate sealed the deal for the Indians. Drew Daniels led D-B with a 75 while Blaze Blizard added a 76.

“Delwadia was 4-over after seven holes and then played the rest of the way 1-over.’’ D-B coach Eddie Durham said. “That was big for us. We have no complaints. Today was about advancing.’’

Armstrong took the rain delay in stride.

“I just relaxed and when we went back out I refocused on my game,’’ said Armstrong, who along with Botts, earned Big 8 Conference Co-Player of the Year honors. “I hit a lot of greens today so I knew I’d eventually start making a few birdies.’’

After not winning the Big 8 Conference tournament on his home course at Silver Lake, Armstrong was highly motivated heading into the district tourney.

“I really want to win this title,’’ Armstrong said. “It’s been a long journey but well worth it.’’

York blazed through the front nine 3-under par. But she stumbled over the last two holes on the back nine.

“Everything really went my way on the front,’’ York said. “But I’m really happy about Brianna and I winning the team title.’’

White won the Big 8 individual title.

“We’re feeling pretty confident right now about our chances as a team in the regionals,’’ York said.

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