Tuesday, 04 May 2021 16:11

Raiders battle elements at 4A Midwest Regional, don't qualify for states

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ROSports File Photo: Junior Ethan Brown watches a shot during the SAC championship last week. ROSports File Photo: Junior Ethan Brown watches a shot during the SAC championship last week. Deon Cranford - The Richmond Observer.

JAMESTOWN, N.C. — Competing in the NCHSAA 4A Midwest Regional on Monday, and battling intermittent thunderstorms, the Richmond Senior High School boys’ golf team saw its season come to an end.

Playing at Jamestown Park Golf Course, the Raiders played an 18-hole round against other team and individual regional qualifiers from the Central Piedmont, Metro and Sandhills Athletic conferences. 

Following its second-place finish in the SAC championship last week, Richmond and head coach Keith Parsons took five golfers to the regional round: seniors Jonathan Rich, Jaxon Mabe and Will Thompson, junior Ethan Brown and sophomore Ayden Mabe. 

Unfortunately, none of the Raiders qualified for the state championship tournament.

Pinecrest High School, which shot a 273 (-15), and R.J. Reynolds High School (291, +3), finished first and second, respectively, clinching their appearance at states. 

Jackson Van Paris, of Pinecrest, led the field with a 64 (-8). Teammates Caden Bertagnol and Jackson Bode both finished -4 par with a 68.

The Raiders, as a team, finished the afternoon with a score of 395. Ahead of them was Page High School, which collected a score of 302.

“Long day with the weather delay, which came before three of our players had started,” Parsons said. “I hope each of them found something to enjoy from the experience; it was the only time this season they played with someone from another school. 

“We also had the opportunity to travel as a group to a practice round and then back for the regional, which was another return to normalcy after an odd year,” he added.

Rich’s final chapter of his high school career ended atop the Raiders’ scorecard. The senior shot a 78 (+6), notching a 38 (+2) on the front nine, before ending with a 40 (+4) on the back. Rich finished tied for 21st, missing the cut to states by five strokes.

Through five holes, Richmond was +1 and was just two shots off the lead, as three golfers were at -1. He had two bogeys on the front, and two bogeys and a double bogey on the final nine holes.

Jaxon Mabe was next to place for the Raiders, taking 29th overall with a score of 98. He shot a 50 on the front and a 48 on the back. Closing out the next three spots in the standings were Brown (100, 50-50), Ayden Mabe (109, 54-55) and Thompson (111, 54-57).

Individual qualifiers to also punch their ticket for the 4A state championship were Mason Beshears (West Forsyth, 71), Jack Burris (Grimsley, 72), Andrew Plate (Page, 72) and Christopher Ha (Jack Britt, 73).

“We are losing three wonderful seniors from the group who played yesterday in Jonathan, Jaxon and Will,” Parsons noted. “All have been a part of the program since their ninth grade years, and each has made an impact. 

“Jonathan came up short in his bid to qualify for the state tournament, even though he played very well,” he closed. “Still, I hope they all think about what it took to make it to the regional as a team, something we haven’t done in a few years. That is an impressive accomplishment.”

Kyle Pillar

Nine-time N.C. Press Association award-winning sports editor. Indiana University of Pennsylvania communications media and journalism alumni. English teacher, Ninth Grade Academy.

Submit local sports scores to: kpillar@richmondobserver.com

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