In each of the last two years, Surry County has been able to brag about having the best 1A high school golf team in North Carolina.
Mount Airy High School won the 1A men’s golf title in the spring of 2016, and in the fall of the next year, the Lady Bears finished second in a combined 1A/2A championship, topped only by a 2A school, and were treated as state champions when this year’s Wells Fargo Cup standings were tabulated.
In the fall of 2016, Mount Airy’s Alyssa Cox, then a sophomore, finished as the low scorer among 1A women’s golfers in that year’s state individual championship.
In the spring of 2018, East Surry got in on the fun, finishing as the best 1A traditional school men’s golf team. Teams and individuals from North Surry, Surry Central and Elkin have also turned in strong performances in the past two seasons, as well.
But for all of this success, the county doesn’t have a junior gold championship tournament of its own. Prominent local golfers such as Cox, Mount Airy’s Nabyant Wagner and East Surry’s Landon Barnes have had to travel to compete in any off-season competitions.
This will change early next month. Steve Forrest, a Surry native who spent many years as a PGA professional at the Country Club Golf Center in Winston-Salem, has organized a county-wide tournament for junior golfers of both sexes that will utilize all four courses in the county.
“I grew up in Mount Airy, and I’ve been a golfer all my life,” said Forrest, who sold the Golf Center a few years ago but remains a PGA pro and has been for nearly four decades. “I’ve played in six national championships in golf, and I wanted to give something back to the county. My family was wanting to do the same thing.”
The first Surry County Junior Golf Championship will be held on July 9-10. Golfers will play 18 holes on each day, with the winner determined by individual stroke play. The tournament is open to all junior golfers age 18 and under who have not started college and who are either a resident of Surry County, or an active member of a golf club located in Surry County.
Golfers will be divided into four age groups: 11 and under, 12-13, 14-15 and 16-18. Trophies will be presented to the top finishers in each age group. Ages will be determined as of July 9. The entry fee is just $10 per golfer, and includes lunch and a tee gift.
“There will be a perpetual trophy for both the boys and the girls, and it will have the winners’ names on it for eternity,” Forrest said.
On Monday, July 9, the girls’ portion of the tournament will begin at the Mount Airy Country Club, with the boys playing across town at Cross Creek Country Club. The second round will be played the following day, with the girls at Cedarbrook Country Club and the boys at Pilot Knob Park Country Club.
The application deadline is Friday, July 6. Entry forms are available at the Round 1 venues for each gender, MACC for girls and CCCC for the boys.