GETTING a pair of sub-90 rounds Monday, the Jackson County girls’ golf team proved itself as one of the better teams in Class AAA.
Hattie Sewell, the team’s no. 4 player, came through with an 88 and Cierra Gunnin added an 89 as Jackson County surged to a seventh-place finish at the state tournament at Waynesboro Country Club.
“I thought the girls played wonderful today (Monday),” coach Jeff Algard said. “We went down this weekend and did a couple of practice rounds early. The more they saw the course, the better they seemed to play.”
Jordan Garner also scored, shooting a 99 as the Lady Panthers finished with a 276. Haleigh McCullum (104) also played, but didn’t score.
“Overall, as a team, I really think they accomplished what we were looking for,” Algard said.
Blessed Trinity won the Class AAA girls’ title, shooting a 245. North Oconee, which will be moving out of Jackson County’s region next year, finished in second with a 249. Buford shot a 255 to finish third.
It was a standout year for the Lady Panthers, who lost just once during the regular season and shot a school-best 269 at the region tournament to qualify for sectionals.
Algard expressed his pride in the group.
“I commend all of the team, from the JV players up to the no. 1 varsity,” Algard said. “Because their goal this year was to make it to state and do the best they could do out there. And they accomplished all the goals they had.”
Jackson County loses two seniors next year but will retain its top two scorers at state, Sewell and Gunnin. Algard points out that the top two teams in Class AAA — North Oconee and Buford — will move out of the classification next year, so the Lady Panthers have a chance to move up in the standings should they return to state next year.
“I feel really good about next year,” Algard said.