The New Hanover golf team joined three other individuals from the area with a return trip to the village of Pinehurst to compete in the North Carolina High School Athletic Association 4A Championship.
The two-day event opened Monday as players teed off on the Par 72, 6,793-yard No. 8 Course. Among the 84 golfers in the field, Laney’s Jackson Young and Michael Jones represented the local conglomerate along with Coy Shepard from Hoggard.
The Wildcats sent five qualifiers after a third-place finish as a team in last week’s 4A East Regional. Mideastern Conference Champion Jackson Tyler led the pack for New Hanover, while Brad Mickle, Brantley Moore, Thomas Hill and Jack Sandlin opened the tournament just after 9 a.m.
Blake Wagoner is the first-round leader after the standout from Hough High School (Cornelius, NC) posted a five-under-par 67. Wagoner hit back-to-back birdies on the par 5, 17th and par 3, 18th to finish with six total birdies on the day. Just four players are in the red after the opening round, with three golfers at even-par, including New Hanover’s Jackson Tyler. He sits five strokes behind Wagoner heading into the final round on Tuesday.
Tyler paced the Wildcats with four birdies on the afternoon as leader among local representatives at the event. The junior transfer was one over par at the turn after teeing off on hole 10, but hit consecutive birdies on the par 5, 559-yard second hole and par 4, 386-yard third.
Young is tied for 33rd after the round one after the junior from Laney hit 78 on Monday. Following a double bogey and bogey to start his day, Young rebounded and sank his lone birdie putt on the par 4, 358-yard 12th hole. He was even-par on the four par 3’s throughout the course and carded 11 pars in the round.
Moore (NHHS) was one shot behind Young with, 79. Hill (NHHS), Mickle (NHHS), Jones (Laney) and Sandlin (NHHS) all closed with scores in the mid-80s.
The top four scores of five players from each team are counted towards the team total. New Hanover is tied for seventh among the 12 schools competing for the team championship.
Click here for the complete leader board from the 4A Golf Championship.
Individual leaderboard Round 1
No. 1 Blake Wagoner (Hough), 67 (-5)
T-5 Jackson Tyler (NHHS), 72, (E)
T-33 Jackson Young (Laney), 78 (+6)
T-39 Brantley Moore (NHHS), 79 (+7)
T-64 Thomas Hill (NHHS), 83 (+11)
T-66 Brad Mickle (NHHS), 84 (+12)
T-71 Michael Jones (Laney), 85 (+13)
T-73 Jack Sandlin (NHHS), 86 (+14)
No. 84 Coy Shepard (Hoggard), 101 (+29)
T-1 Myers Park, 296; T-1 Pinecrest, 296; No. 3 Hough, 303; No. 4 Broughton, 304; No. 5 Green Hope, 306; No. 6 Leesville Road, 311; T-7 New Hanover, 318; T-7 Reagan, 318;