Bryan County golf coach Randy Cooper knows his team is in for a tough match every time they step on the course, but that is just what he wanted in putting together the schedule.
“We’re doing well, but we try to play bigger schools to get the kids ready for the area tournament,” he said. “With any sport, you get better by playing against competition that is better than you.”
On March 30, the Redskins teed it up against Effingham and South Effingham at Black Creek Golf Club. Bryan County placed third in both the boys’ and girls’ matches. Scoring is based on the lowest four rounds among the boys and the lowest two rounds for the girls. The South Effingham boys carded a 176, while Effingham shot 178 and Bryan County 188. For the girls, Effingham came in at 89, followed by South Effingham at 104 and Bryan County at 108.
This year’s roster includes Kelly Futch, Benjamin Kirby, Chris Taylor, Terry Griffin, Jacob Barnes, Nash Goodwin and Mason Shuman for the boys and Avery Adams, Abigail Ferreira and Mallory Traywick for the girls.
Low score for the boys was Futch at 43, while Adams shot a 47 for the girls.
“The kids can be pretty hard on themselves when they hit a bad shot, but I tell them that’s the coach’s job,” Cooper laughed. “I tell them to stay positive and think about the next shot, but with golf after a couple of holes you kind of know what sort of round you’re going to have.”
Unlike other sports that are divided up into regions, the Georgia High School Association puts golf teams into areas. Bryan County is among 15 teams in the AA-1 area, as opposed to other Redskins teams competing in Region 2-AA. The area meet will be held in early May.
Playing home matches at Black Creek has also been an advantage in helping Cooper attract the larger schools he puts on the schedule.
“This is such a great course, a lot of teams want to play here,” he said. “And the folks at Black Creek are great. They don’t charge us for practice or matches. I talk to some coaches and they say that eats up half their budget.”
In fact, six of the team’s 10 matches this year are at home.
Remaining matches for the Redskins include April 10 against Benedictine at the Savannah Golf Club, April 25 against Emmanuel County Institute at Black Creek and April 28 against Southeast Bulloch and Statesboro at the Georgia Southern University course.