Multiple Piedmont champions

Published 11:09 am Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Lunenburg County was represented by multiple winners Thursday during the Piedmont Junior Championship golf tournament at Amelia Golf and Country Club.

Hogan Whitlow won the boys 12- and 13-year-old division, and Mary Katelyn Hite won the girls 7- to 10-year-old division.

Whitlow won by shooting an 84, which was nine strokes better than his nearest competitor. He said he thought it was a strong performance considering where the tournament was held.

“It was extremely (good) for me, and then for it being on the hardest course that Amelia is, I was very proud,” he said.

Whitlow enjoyed considerable success in Piedmont Junior Golf tournaments this summer, placing first in an event in South Hill, first in an event in Blackstone and second in an event in Halifax.

He plans to continue playing for Kenston Forest School, which fields a team in the spring.

“This is my first year taking it pretty serious,” he said of golf, “and I’ve been playing since I was, like, 3, just going out with my dad and have a club and hit a ball every now and then when he’s playing.”

Hite went into the championship Thursday on a mission.

“The week before that, I had lost, and I was determined to win,” she said. “So I hit and I was doing good and I was doing good, and I was like, ‘Well, this is going to turn out great for me’…”

Hite recorded a nine-hole score of 41, which was 11 strokes better than her nearest competitor.

She noted it was her short game — particularly chipping and putting — that was working well on the day to help her win.

“I’m usually not that good at it, but that day I was really surprised,” she said. “I had practiced all week, and then that was the day.”

Though she is only 10 years old, Mary Katelyn already has several years of experience on the links.

“I started when I was, like, 6, and I actually was getting lessons and stuff,” she said. “But when I was younger, I would just go and hit the ball and run to it and hit the ball and run to it.”

She claimed second place at the Piedmont championship tournament last year.

Winners of the other age divisions this year included Evan Mason (boys 16-17), Jackson Moseley (boys 14-15), Emily Erickson (girls 14-17), Lindsey Towery (girls 11-13), Will Johnson (boys 10-11) and Jackson Allgood (boys 7-9).