For the last seven years, Good Hope’s varsity boys have controlled the local golf landscape, winning six of the past seven county tournaments, while thoroughly dominating most of their competition in other matches.
Fairview coach Kurt Knight is hoping there will a changing of the guard in the 2013 campaign.
“Good Hope has had a good run,” he said. “We’ve finished second to them a couple of times in the past few years. We definitely feel like we are in the mix this season.”
The Aggie boys’ squad is off to a blistering 13-2 start with the only two losses coming in its most recent match to county foes Cold Springs and Holly Pond. Fairview was without No. 2 player Cody Lackey, who was nursing an ankle injury.
“I’ve seen a lot of improvement in them from last season,” Knight said. “Everyone has improved tremendously. Our only real setback right now is Cody’s injury.”
The Aggies are led by one of the best players in the county in Trey Handey. According to Knight, the sophomore has claimed low medalist in every match this season.
“Trey has been playing really well,” the coach said. “Every time he’s went out there he’s shot par or better. He’s really played excellent golf.”
Knight’s team doesn’t possess a wealth of experience — two of his top five players are freshman — but said he’s liked what he’s seen out of them so far this season.
“Seth (Lancaster) and Austin (Scott) were in eighth grade last year,” he said. “It’s a bit of a shock for them playing in these big tournaments but they’re great kids. It’ll help us in the future.”
The coach is also optimistic about his team’s chances moving forward into the spring.
“Cold Springs, Holly Pond and Good Hope are all really good,” he said. “We have a good opportunity as well. It’ll take our best to do it but we have a good shot.”
The girls are doing just as well, if not better, than their male counterparts, sporting a squeaky clean 12-0 mark in matches.
They also finished second in the 4A and under category in a tournament at Silver Lakes and sixth overall.
Despite having a girls program for just three seasons, Knight has been pleased with the body of work, which also includes a county championship last season.
“We’ve really been pushing the girls team,” he said. “If we come out and play like we should, we’ll be in good shape.”
Abbi Yeager, Maci Yeager, Sadie Boyd and Sarah Harper spearhead Fairview’s top four. The Aggies return good experience from a team who missed going to the state tournament by just one stroke last year.
Knight credits coaches Chris Yeager and Jimmy Handey for helping him get the program to where he wants it to be.
“They both help me out a lot,” Knight said. “Chris has really helped with the girls as has Jimmy with the boys.”
Fairview will certainly get to test where it stands in the coming weeks. Both Aggie squads will participate in the upcoming Chesley Oaks Invitational (boys on April 1, girls on April 3) against a bevy of schools they’ll likely see down the road in sectional tournament play.
“It lets us see how we stack up against other teams in our section,” Knight said. “Hopefully we play well.”
‰ Jake Winfrey can be reached at 256-734-2131, ext. 258 or at email@example.com.