By Sports editor Brian Hoffman
The William Byrd golfers wrapped up a rare spring season with an eighth place finish in the Region 3D golf tournament Monday. Abingdon High won the tournament at the Ashley Plantation course in Daleville.
The victorious Falcons shot a team total of 294 to outscore Lord Botetourt by nine strokes. The Cavaliers dominated the Blue Ridge District mini-tour and were considered to be a contender for the regional title, but they couldn’t keep pace with Abingdon and only one team advances to the state tournament.
“I knew they were good but I wasn’t expecting them to be that good,” said LB coach Todd Smith. “We looked at their scores this season and they averaged about a 303, and I thought we could beat that. But they played really well. They had two girls in the top four and they didn’t mess up once.”
Byrd finished with a 359, led by Kendrick South’s 84. Also scoring for the Terriers were Clayton Gilmore at 91 and both Evan Mullen and Chris Blankenship at 92. Griffin Horacek carded a 94 and Kobe Turner shot 104.
“We did well considering it was our first match playing the ball down not in our own fairway, having to replay shots without being able to drop in fairway, and playing no max score,” said Byrd coach Scott Whitehead. “We improved almost 40 shots from our first match to our last and I’m excited about the fact that we have just one senior, Chris Blankenship.”
The Blue Ridge District wrapped up the mini-tour with a match at Hanging Rock last week and Lord Botetourt had the low score, as has been the case in all five matches. Byrd shot a 353 at Hanging Rock, led by Horacek’s 85. Blankenship had 88, South had 89 and Mullen shot 91.
Samir Davidov won the district individual crown as LB took four of the top five spots. Davidov and teammate Ashton Harper also qualified for the state as individuals Monday.
Byrd’s top golfer in the season long standings was Horacek, who finished 14th in the BRD. Mullen was right behind in 15th while Blankenship was 19th and South was 21st.
“We have some great kids and good golfers returning next year and are excited to see what they can do in August,” said Whitehead. “I am hopeful that our kids will find their way to the golf course in the next few months and we can push for a better finish.”