MANCHESTER – The West Union boys’ golf team has been dominant in the Southern Hills Athletic Conference, claiming 14 of the last 15 league titles entering the 2018 season.
In recent seasons, it’s been North Adams challenging the Dragons for the crown, but this year there’s a new team in the mix.
Freshman Daulton McDonald fired a 5-over 41 on the back nine at Hilltop Golf Course on Tuesday in the first round of the SHAC Golf Tournament to power Manchester to a share of the team lead with West Union, who was led by Carson McFarland’s 41 to create a tie at the top of the individual leaderboard as well.
“We’ve got two returning seniors. I’ve got two freshmen that came in that are both really quality golfers, so we’ve kind of seen where the cycle has come to us now,” said Manchester coach Adam Poole. “It’s finally our turn to be able to play.”
The Greyhounds finished third in the SHAC last fall, led by Logan Hayslip’s third place finish. Hayslip finished with a 6-over 42 in the first round of this year’s tournament.
“His all-around game is pretty solid. He hits the ball pretty long,” said Poole. “He’s a long hitter off the tee, but he does everything pretty solid.”
Manchester has relied on an influx of young talent this year with the pair of McDonald and Luke Hayslip, Logan’s younger brother. The freshman shot a 7-over 43 on Tuesday. How much is the Greyhounds’ coach counting on them to continue to try to take the SHAC title from the Dragons?
“Right now, 100 percent,” said Poole. “I’ve got two seniors and two freshmen that post up most of the scores, so a lot. They’ve answered the bell all year.”
Zach James rounded out Manchester’s scoring with a 48.
West Union lost three-time SHAC champion Elijah McCarty to graduation. McCarty has now taken his talents to the Shawnee State University golf team, but the Dragons have found somebody to replace him at the top of the leaderboard with McFarland.
“He’s up and down. He’ll have a great run like that and the next time he comes out it’ll be a 51, but I wish he could just get his consistency down. He plays football too, so he misses some with that. If we’re going to move on in the tournament I need to get him consistent,” said West Union coach Carl Schneider. “Andrew [Sapp] had a bad day today of 50, and he’s my number two man. I expected more in the 40 range.”
The Dragons got solid rounds out of Dakota Pell and Clayton Jones with both fired 8-over 44s, as well as Jacob Pell, who finished with a 45. The experience Schneider returns from their SHAC success played a role with unfavorable conditions at Hilltop on Tuesday.
“I think it was just wet conditions and I’ve got some experienced kids that know how to get through some of those conditions I think,” said Schneider.
The Green Devils – West Union’s toughest competition in recent years – finished the first round with a team score of 192.
Manchester and West Union will likely continue to battle throughout the next three rounds of the tournament. The Greyhounds edged out the Dragons in the Adams County Cup earlier in the season by one stroke.
“It’s playing the golf course,” said Schneider. “They’ve got some good young freshmen coming up with some experience and it’s going to be a good battle all the way through I think.”
The next round is scheduled to take place Thursday at Buckeye Hills Golf Course.
“It’s one of the tougher courses we’ve played, but as long as it’s not as wet as it was out here today, I think we’ll be fine,” said Poole.
Round three is scheduled for the following Tuesday at Whiteoak Golf Course and the final round is scheduled for Sept. 18 at Snow Hills Golf Course.
Behind North Adams in fourth is Eastern Brown with a 196, followed by Ripley and Whiteoak at 197 each.
“I think we’re going to be OK. What I wanted to try and do was stay in the top five. We broke 200, we had a 47 and a couple 48s and my freshmen performed as well as expected,” said Ripley coach Michael Scanlan. “Corey [Germann] is kind of starting to turn things around, which is good. Today what we wanted to do was be around 190, so we were at 197 and we should be in the top five.”
Ethan Tracy and Jadan Walkup both finished with 8-over 44s for the Warriors. Gabe Fyffe fired the Blue Jays’ best score at 47, with Peyton Fyffe and Corey Germann right behind with 48s.
Fairfield and Lynchburg-Clay sit in seventh and eighth, respectively, while Peebles is in ninth with a 220. Oakley Burba and Dawson Mills both had 15-over 51s.
West Union; 174
North Adams; 192
NAME; TEAM; SCORE
Daulton McDonald; Manchester; 41
Carson McFarland; West Union; 41
Logan Hayslip; Manchester; 42
Luke Hayslip; Manchester; 43
Clayton Jones; West Union; 44
Carson Hall; North Adams; 44
Dakota Pell; West Union; 44
Ethan Tracy; Eastern; 45
Jadon Walkup; Eastern; 45
Jacob Pell; West Union; 45
Gabe; Fyffe; Ripley; 47
Peyton Fyffe; Ripley; 48
Zach James; Manchester; 48
Carson Chaney; North Adams; 48
Corey Germann; Ripley; 48
Ryan Roberts; Whiteoak; 48
Zach Harless; Whiteoak; 49
Jamie Woods; Eastern; 50
Andrew Sapp; West Union; 50
Tyler Stevens; Lynchburg-Clay; 50
Anthony Wylie; North Adams; 50
Tyler Large; Whiteoak; 50
Cameron Young; North Adams; 50
Bryson Simmons; Fairfield; 51
Oakley Burba; Peebles; 51
Dylan Colvin; Manchester; 51
Dawson Mills; Peebles; 51
Clay Risner; Whiteoak; 51
Ryland Donley; Fairfield; 53
Braydon Eversole; Lynchburg-Clay; 53
T.J. Holt; North Adams; 54
Brayden Hanson; Ripley; 54
Jordan Wills; Lynchburg-Clay; 55
Bryce Posey; Fairfield; 56
Clayton Fannin; Eastern; 56
Wyatt Willey; Fairfield; 57
Brennan Kyle; Peebles; 58
Damin Pierson; Lynchburg-Clay; 60
Alan McCoy; Peebles; 60
Jacob Campbell; Whiteoak; 60
Cody Germann; Ripley; 60
Logan Mahan; Peebles; 61
Conner Priest; Fairfield; 64
DJ Feck; Fayetteville-Perry; 68
Jaxon Melone; Fayetteville-Perry; 70
Elliott Richardson; Lynchburg-Clay; 75