Meridian, Jones hold leads in NJCAA Region 23 golf
APPROACH East Central Community College's Jeremy Stevens cuts loose a shot from the 10th fairway at Briarwood Country Club during Tuesday's opening round of the Region 23 Golf Tournament. Photo by Carisa McCain/The Meridian Star
By Marty Stamper / EMG sports assistant
April 24, 2002
The Meridian Community College Eagles and Jones Junior College Bobcats found themselves leading their respective divisions at the end of the first round of the MACJC State/Region 23 Golf Tournament at Briarwood Country Club Tuesday afternoon.
MCC and Briarwood are the hosts of the 13-school tournament, while Rush Sports Medicine is the event's sponsor.
The real battle is for the MACJC state championship as all of the teams, except Meridian, are members of that league. At 306, Gulf Coast enters the final round with a four-stroke lead over Hinds (310). Also in contention are Itawamba (311), Jones (312), Copiah-Lincoln (321), Pearl River (323), Northeast (324), and East Mississippi (328).
Led by Josh Martin and Daniel Boles, MCC shot a blistering 5-over par 293 to grab a 13-stroke lead over Mississippi Gulf Coast in the Region 23 Division II standings heading into today's final round.
Martin shot a 3-under par 69 on the par-72, 6,742-yard Briarwood course. Starting on No. 10, the Northwest Rankin graduate was 1-over at the turn. After pars on Nos. 1 and 2, he caught fire over the next six holes as he pocketed four birdies before closing with a par on No. 9.
Boles, who prepped at Clarkdale, fired a 1-under 71. He was 1-under on his first nine and had one birdie to go with one bogey on his final nine holes.
MCC also got a 75 from Clinton Hales and a 78 from Brandon Laird.
The winner advances to the NJCAA Division II National Championship at Palm Valley Country Club in Phoenix, Ariz., May 21-24.
Gulf Coast was in second place in Division II after shooting a 306. James Rentrop and Tim McCabe both had a 3-over 75, while Tyler Spruill shot a 76 and B.J. Stout an 80.
Hinds was in third place with a 310. The Eagles got a 75 from Michael Granberry, a 77 from Dwayne Wooten, a 78 from Marko Matthews, and 80s from Trey Crum and Luke Jiminez.
Closely behind Hinds was well-balanced Itawamba at 311. The Indians got a 77 from Scotty Patterson to go with 78s from Wade Fleming, Cain Myers, and Chris Moore.
In fifth place was Pearl River with a 323. Northeast Mississippi was nipping at the Wildcats' heels at 324. East Mississippi was in seventh place in Division II with a 328. The Lions were led by Devin Davis with a 79 and Matthew Downing with an 80. EMCC also got an 84 from Jon Luke Hazelwood and an 85 from Hayes Rector. Completing Division II with a 350 was Holmes. Jones came into the Division III portion of the tournament on a roll, having won its last two tournaments. The Bobcats continued their hot play Tuesday as they fired a 312 to grab a nine-stroke lead over Copiah-Lincoln.
Leading Jones was Nolan Green with a 74. Green had birdies on Nos. 12 and 13 to go with bogeys on Nos. 9, 10, 14, and 16.
The Bobcats also got a 78 from Adam Napier, a 79 from Tim Rasberry, and an 81 from Jacob Bynum.
Co-Lin was in second place with a 321. The Wolves got a pair of 79s from Matt Mooney and Zach Baldwin, an 80 from Joey Young, and an 83 from Jonathan Halley.
Led by Jeremy Stevens and David Burt at 82, the East Central Warriors were in third place with a 336. ECCC also got an 85 from E.J. Bane and an 87 from Zack Thames.
Northwest was in fourth place with a 357. Dustin Howell's 84 led the Rangers.
Southwest Mississippi is competing as individuals only, but Will Kemmel is in the hunt for the all-tournament team with an 82.