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Excellence on the links

We would like to use our editorial space this week to celebrate and congratulate the Central High School varsity golf team.

On Sept. 10 at Lunenburg Country Club, the Chargers won a tri-match against Randolph-Henry High School and Buckingham County High School that meant they had become the regular season James River District champions.

It was a great day for Central because it had clinched a championship, but even beyond that, this was a monumental achievement because of the history involved. The Randolph-Henry Statesmen entered that Sept. 10 tri-match having won the regular season district title for the past 19 years in a row. The Chargers became the first team not named Statesmen to hold the title since 1999.

At the beginning of this season, we had expectations that Central’s team would remain solid, but because key seniors Joseph and Thomas McDaniel had graduated, we figured that the Chargers would not be as potent as the 2018 squad that won the district tourney and that snapped Randolph-Henry’s 16-year win streak against district foes.

But we underestimated just how strong the returning group was and how productive the team’s freshmen would be.

Veterans on the 2019 squad include seniors Cole Williams, Mason Elliott and Austin Hall and junior Hogan Whitlow. New to the team this year are freshmen Robert Hite and Hunter Gary.

Williams was most deservedly named the 2019 James River District Co-Player of the Year for golf. He basically lived in the 30s in terms of the nine-hole scores he produced. He was the low medalist in almost every single competition this season.

Whitlow was usually in the top two on the team, providing another reliably low score.

Elliott came through in the clutch Sept. 10, shooting an outstanding 39 to give Central two golfers in the 30s, as Williams shot a 36. Whitlow had a 43, and Hite shot a 47, making the team’s top-four as he impressively did multiple times this season.

The Chargers’ team score of 165 on Sept. 10 was their best of the season at the time, decisively topping Randolph-Henry’s 175 and Buckingham’s 214.

Two days later, the Chargers shot a 164, led by a 35 from Whitlow, a 38 from Williams, a 43 from Hite and a 48 from Hall.

Every single player on Central’s team made key contributions to its success this year, and they did it all under the direction of returning Head Coach Richard McDaniel.

We wish them all the best as they compete in the Region 1B tournament Monday at The Manor Golf Club in Farmville.