Gabriel Garcia | The Advocate & Democrat
Sequoyah's Olivia Raper follows through on a drive during the Region 3-A/AA Golf Tournament Thursday at the Chatata Valley Golf & Country Club in Cleveland.
|Published: 1:41 PM, 09/26/2013
||Last updated: 1:42 PM, 09/26/2013
Author: Gabriel Garcia
Source: The Monroe County Advocate
CLEVELAND â€” Olivia Raper had to spend a little time Thursday evening dwelling on what else she could have come away from Chatata Valley Golf & Country Club with.
The Sequoyah senior was on even par through the first six holes of her back nine at the Region 3-A/AA Golf Tournament, but a four-putt on hole No. 16 derailed her quest for the region medal and an outright team championship for the Lady Chiefs.
As it was, Raper's 82 was good for second place and her seventh straight berth in the state tournament â€” including all four years in high school and three years in middle school.
"It was exciting," Raper said. â€œI missed a few putts today for region. I could've won first place. But we all have those missteps, but going all four times to state is a blessing, because I never thought Iâ€™d do that. Especially my senior year."
With teammate Carley Swabe's 87, Sequoyah tied Boyd Buchananâ€™s girls at first place in the team standings, forcing a team playoff that Boyd Buchanan won 10-9 on the first hole for the region title.
Swabe will still join Raper at the state tournament, and she was practically speechless after the long day was over.
"I'm just really glad I get to go," Swabe said.
Boyd Buchanan's Madison Balthrop took the girls' medal with an 80. Along with Balthrop's teammate Lauren Foster with her 89, the leading two girls each from Sequoyah and Boyd Buchanan were the only four girls who shot a score less than 90 Thursday.
On the boys' side from Sequoyah, Kody Hampton will join the two girls on the trip on Oct. 1-2 to WillowBrook Golf Club in Manchester for the sate tournament.
"It's been something I've been playing for since middle school," said the junior, who finished in fourth place following his score of 78 and a playoff loss against Marion Countyâ€™s Lucas Coffelt. "I'm glad I finally did it. Iâ€™m trying to achieve my goal and win it, and bring it home to Madisonville, to Sequoyah."
But for Hampton's teammates, it was a disappointing end to a day with higher expectations.
Sequoyahâ€™s boys had won the District 5-A/AA tournament at the same golf course Monday, defeating Boyd Buchanan by 13 strokes.
But on Thursday, when Boyd freshman Jake Campbell came in with his 76 â€” which eventually led to a medal after his playoff win against Polk County's Ryan Droke â€” it was the Buccaneers who took the region plaque and the team state tourney berth.
Boyd Buchanan finished with a 322 to Sequoyahâ€™s 331.
"It just seemed like today they watered it a little more and kept it more soft," said senior Bryce Mitchell, who shot an 82 Thursday in comparison to his 80 on Monday. "Nothing just seemed to go as far. I couldn't get my distances down, and it seemed like everything was longer today. I couldn't get the ball there and I was a step short."
Ben Brackett, who was the District 5-A/AA medalist Monday, started Thursday with a four-putt and never recovered, finishing with an 87 and denying the Chiefs junior another trip to the state tournament.
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