By 5SP Staff
The first rounds of the TSSAA Division I-A and Division II-A State Golf Tournaments were held Thursday, Oct. 12, at Sevierville Golf Club.
Here are the main storylines, takeaways and more, presented FREE TO YOU by Brad Rose Golf Instruction.
BACON COOKS SEVIERVILLE GC; LEADS KINGSTON TO DAY ONE LEAD
Will Bacon, a senior at Kingston, finished third individually in the 2022 Class A state tournament.
As it turns out, he wasn’t satisfied with that.
He kicked off the 2023 Class A state tournament with a 6-under-par 66 to take the solo lead in the 63-man field. His score built a three-stroke buffer between himself and Summertown’s Jason Cole Campbell (69). Bacon leads third-place Hayden Howell (Stewart County) by five. They were the only three players in the Class A boys field to break par.
Charles Shelton (East Roberton) and Ethan Arneson (Kingston) were tied for fourth at 72.
Bacon’s round, paired with Arneson’s, put Kingston in position to three-peat as the boys team champion. Kingston won it all in 1999 and 2000. The program repeated that repeat feat in 2021-22. But a team win this week would mark Kingston’s first-ever run of three titles in a row.
The Yellow Jackets carded a team mark of 17-over 305 on Thursday to post a six-shot lead over Stewart County (311) and 12-shot lead over Signal Mountain (317). Alcoa was in fifth place (337) in the eight-team field.
The Tornadoes’ Noah Whitten opened in 75 to tie for eighth place after Day One. Alcoa’s Riley Parsons (77) was tied for 13th.
But Bacon’s play was the story of the day in Class A boys. His eagle at the par-5 third on the River Course kickstarted his day. Even a double-bogey at the ninth did little to derail his round. He quickly made up for that with back-nine birdies at Nos. 10, 11, 13, 17 — and an eagle at the par-5 18th.
All told, Bacon made two eagles and six birdies to help comprise that 66.
FULL FIELD SCORES
CAK BOYS IN POSITION FOR 7-PEAT IN DIVISION II-A
The lead is marginal. But it’s a lead, nonetheless.
The Christian Academy of Knoxville Warriors, who are on a quest for a seventh consecutive state championship, led Battle Ground Academy and Franklin Road Academy by just two strokes each after Thursday’s first round in Division II-A.
CAK posted an 8-over 296 team total. USJ (307) and First Baptist Academy (309) aren’t far behind in fourth and fifth, respectively.
But a crowded leaderboard is nothing new to CAK. The Warriors’ lead in 2022 after the first round was small and three other teams were giving chase heading into the final round — but they made a second-day surge to clinch the win.
They’ll need a similar form Friday at Sevierville Golf Club’s River Course.
CAK’s Bryson White, FRA’s Miguel de Gracia and BGA’s Leo Froio led the 36-player Division II-A field after first-round 71s.
Alex Gaetz (74), Tanner Varney (75) and Cooper Russell (76) comprised CAK’s 296 mark, along with White’s 1-under round.
FBA’s Lane Stokes was tied for ninth at 74. Maryville Apostolic left-hander Collin Keino (75) was tied for 13th.
FULL FIELD SCORES
KINGSTON LADY YELLOW JACKETS IN THE HUNT IN CLASS A
The Kingston girls’ golf team are in a familiar spot after the first round of the Division I, Class A, state tournament.
And that’s chasing Summertown.
Last year, Kingston trailed Summertown by nine shots after Day One, shot 2-over as a team in the final round and nearly pulled off the comeback. Still, Summertown won the 2022 Class A state tournament by only three shots.
This time around, Summertown’s lead is just seven. It posted an impressive 1-over 141 mark. But Kingston is breathing down their necks after Brylee Crouse (73) and Kailey Lane (75) got the Lady Yellow Jackets in the clubhouse at 148.
Crouse, an MTSU commit, started with a double bogey on the Highlands Course at Sevierville. But she shot even par the final 14 holes to keep Kingston in it. Lane, who’s pledged to play in college at Tennessee Tech, made three birdies in her round of 5 over.
Summertown’s Karlie Campbell led after the first round with a 2-under 68. She finished bogey-double-birdie to let Kingston creep a little closer.
In second place, Crouse trails Campbell for the individual title by five. Lane is in solo fourth, just seven shots back.
Greenback’s Lorien Sweet tied for eighth in the first round at 80.
FULL FIELD SCORES
CAK GIRLS IN SECOND BUT WORK TO DO FRIDAY
Providence Christian appears prepared to defend its Division II-A state title. It shot an astounding 9-under 131 total to lead commandingly after Thursday’s first round over CAK (147) and Webb-Bell Buckle (148).
Providence golfers Caroline Pardue (64) and Isabella Johnson (67) occupied the top two spots on the individual leaderboard. Pardue, a senior, is an MTSU commit. Johnson, a junior, played in the U.S. Women’s Amateur this past summer.
CAK sophomore Isabella Coughlin was fourth with a round of 70 at the Highlands Course, though she was 3 under through eight holes to start her round. She parred her last six holes to remain in contention.
Alexis Fishel, a junior, shot 77 Thursday to complement Coughlin’s score and give CAK a 147 mark.
Lakeway’s Addisyn Newman shot 79 and was in solo 13th after the first round.
FULL FIELD SCORES.