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JCHS Golf Team finishes season strong

The JCHS Golf Team wound down their season last Monday, playing against some of their toughest competition at the District 1-AA golf tournament in Elizabethton. The Longhorns’ team consisted of seniors Jon Vannoy and Jacob Henson, junior Blade Hampton, and sophomores Nathan Timbs and Nathaniel Graybeal. Eight teams in all competed, with the top three team totals moving on to regionals. Officials also awarded medals for the three best single players. The top five individual players not already associated with one of the three teams going to regionals, were selected to make up one additional special team.
Johnson County was not able to take one of the team spots, with Happy Valley coming in at first with a team total of 301 strokes, University High at second with 341 total strokes, and Elizabethton at third with 342 strokes. The Longhorns actually came in sixth with a 369 stroke total, behind Sullivan East at 348 and Hampton at 352, but still ahead of Sullivan North at 373 and Unicoi County at 461.
Playing a full 18 holes, Elizabethton’s course is a par 72, but only 6 of the 40 players were able to even get into the 70s, with 3 of those coming from Happy Valley. In fact, the Warriors’ Colton Oakes was the only player to go below par, with a final score of 70. With Happy Valley, University High, and Elizabethton guaranteed spots at Regionals, a special team of the best players from the remaining 5 teams was selected.
Johnson County’s Nathan Timbs was one of those to make the cut, coming in at the end of the day with a respectable score of 84. “Through the first five holes I was one over so I was expecting to do pretty good,” Timbs said after the match. “I was happy with what I was shooting, but then I had about six bogeys in a row and that killed me, but overall I’m happy with the way I played. I can’t complain.”
Golf can be a very fickle sport and many of the other players were having issues with the course, especially considering the early morning conditions when the tournament first began. “Every sport I just over think too much and I just need to calm down and not do that,” senior Jacob Henson said. “This has been a really good season. Me and Jon Vannoy both have done really good this year. I think we’ve done a pretty good job of leading the team as seniors.”
Henson brought in a 97 at the end of the day, ahead of Graybeal at 103 but just two strokes shy of Vannoy at 95. Surprisingly the younger players seemed to carry the match with Blade Hampton earning a 93 behind Timbs at 84. Of the five members of the team, Timbs was the only one who said he actually felt very comfortable with the course, potentially a big factor in his success, but also cautioned that Elizabethton does have its difficult holes. “I love this course,” Timbs said. “It’s in really good shape. I like a lot of the holes, and there are some good scoring opportunities. I had a little trouble at #17. It’s an uphill par 3 and I just have a lot of trouble at that hole. I ended up doubling. It’s not really the hole itself, I just push my irons a lot and I just pushed it right and you have to hit pretty much a perfect shot to be on the green on that hole. It’s just really tough for me.”

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