Cleveland High’s Heidi Barringer and Kyle Limburg, of Walker Valley, both opened play on the extremely tough back nine at the WillowBrook Golf Club and both had trouble from the beginning. The pair of juniors were back at it this morning, playing in the final round of the event.
Wrapping up the season with an extremely hot final few weeks, Barringer became the first Lady Raider to earn a spot in the state field since her older sister Kileigh did so in 2009. After shooting a season-high 58 on her first nine holes, Barringer rebounded with a 3-over-par 39 on the front nine for a 97, tying her for 36th place in the 56-player individual standings.
“I was proud of her for bouncing back like she did,” declared Cleveland head coach Nick Cantrell. “She was miserable trying to play through her first nine holes, but put that behind her and came back with a strong second half (round) to finish.”
“I told her, now the pressure is off. Just go out tomorrow (Wednesday) and have fun,” the Lady Raider coach added.
After a trio of bogeys were her best holes in the first half of her round, Barringer posted a birdie and five pars on the front nine and would have posted an even-par half round except for finishing with a bogey, double-bogey on the final two holes.
Limburg played in the Nos. 4-5 position for the Mustangs all season, but won a sudden-death playoff at the Region 3-AAA Tournament to be the only Walker Valley player to qualify for the state tournament this year.
His initial TSSAA championship started with a 46 before the turn and finished with a 44 afterwards for a 90. After making just two pars on the back nine, Limburg posted five on the front, but his only two triple-bogeys of the day still sent his score above the 40 mark.
A pair of underclassmen stole the show on the opening day of the state tournament as Coffee County sophomore Matt Johnson fired a 2-under 70 on his home course to lead the boys’ event, while freshman Aubree Jones, of Brighton, topped the girls’ leaderboard with an even-par 72.
Ooltewah’s Samantha Griffith stood in second place heading into today’s final 18 holes, after shooting a 5-over-par 77 on Tuesday. Danny Gleeson of Ooltewah and East Hamilton’s Logan Price also carded 77s, tying them for 21st place with six other golfers.