PILOT MOUNTAIN — East Surry’s Madison Moore shot an 82 to win the Northwest Conference Golf Tournament Wednesday.
Regular season matches cover nine holes, but for the conference final, the girls played all 18 holes at Pilot Knob Park.
Moore came into the day 15 strokes behind North Surry’s Kasie Tolbert in the player of the year race.
She opened with a 42 on the front nine, while Tolbert struggled a bit to post a 46.
North Coach Daniel Johnson said Kasie was having issues with her swing.
She felt like she had a fundamental problem with her timing, getting her hips and shoulders working in unison, he explained.
There is a fine line between scoring a par and a bogey, he noted. A putt might roll just short, or a bad bounce in the fairway can make a player lay up instead of going for the green. Kasie wound up bogeying nearly every hole on the front nine.
On the turn, however, Tolbert improved and shot a 39, the lowest score of the day for either nine holes.
Still, she couldn’t make up ground on Moore, who was tied with her on the back nine until the final hole and finished with a 40.
Playing with them was South Stokes’ Megan Mabe, who posted a 41 and 42 to finish second at 83.
North’s Gatlin Hiatt shot 40 and 44 for an 84 to tie for third place with the Sauras’ Brooke Kiger (44 and 40).
Gatlin had one of her best days, said Johnson. This was the first time this season that she beat Kasie for the team low.
Tolbert’s 85 placed her fifth, while South Stokes’ Brooke Martin was sixth with an 88.
None of the other 12 players on the course came close to those scores.
The Sauras’ Maggie Abbott was seventh at 98. Teammate Nicole Rogers was eighth with a 102. Tying for ninth place were three players with a 103: Brooke Bowman and Elizabeth Shelton, East Surry, and Sarah Holleman, North Surry.
East Coach Chad Freeman said that Moore played well — just not quite as well as she wanted to do.
This season, the sophomore has run into a barrier trying to reach the 30s and had a 40 on the back nine, he said.
She already has a nice game, and she’s barely 15 years old, he pointed out. Any flaws she has in her game now are more mental than physical. That’s to be expected since she’s so young going against 17- and 18-year-olds, he added.
With its strong performance by all five players, South Stokes easily won the team competition. The Sauras scored a 255, well ahead of North Surry’s 272 and East Surry’s 288.
Mount Airy didn’t have enough players to post a team score because of scheduling conflicts.
The match was supposed to occur on Monday, but rain caused a delay, said Bears Coach Tommye Phillips.
Unfortunately, Mount Airy held PSATs Wednesday, and Lauren Hodges and Erica Carlisle were knocked out of playing.
Catherine Scott shot a 109 (55 and 54) for the Bears, and Nina Bowers had a 119 (59 and 60).
In the regular season, the teams use a shotgun start where threesomes are spread around the course and start simultaneously.
However, the regional event next week uses a PGA-style format where players start from either the first tee or the 10th and wait their turn to begin. So, the conference tournament used that format to prepare the girls for regional.
Pilot Knob Park will host the regional Monday as well. Play begins at 9 a.m. for the 1A/2A Central Regional Tournament. About 55-56 girls are qualified to participate.
Reach Jeff Linville at firstname.lastname@example.org or 719-1920.