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DHS golf team drops opener

The Demopolis High golf team opened its season Thursday with a 171-161 loss to Thomasville.

“It was a good match, probably the closest I’ve seen in a while,” DHS coach Mike Black said. “It could have gone either way.

While his team did not pick up the victory, Black was encouraged by its overall performance.

“I think it’s great,” Black said. “All of our players shot between 40 and 43.”

The Tigers started junior Jordan Stone in the No. 1 slot. Junior Russ Seale played the match out of the squad’s No. 2 slot while Ben McCarter played as the No. 3. Senior James Courtney played in the fourth spot while Sean Grifiin shot as the No 5 and freshman Cameron Wells rounded out the sextet.

“I’ve got a mixed bag,” Black said of the makeup of his team. “Three of them have played match play before and three have never played a match in their lives.”

Black expressed his confidence in the 2009 team, but emphasized that it is still seeking to identify its workhorse. The 2008 squad relied heavily upon the efforts of then-senior John Parten.

“We’re going to miss John this year. He loaded the team up and carried it on his back a lot last year,” Black said. “We have seven that I think can step up and play and be really competitive. We’ll just have to take a wait-and-see attitude.”

Black said he believes the schedule the team faces will help it grow immensely.

“We’ve got a loaded schedule,” Black said of a docket that includes Brookwood, Monroe County and Fayette County. Demopolis will face Fayette in an away match.

“It’s going to be a two-hour drive to go play golf, but it will give us some pretty good experience,” Black said.

The DHS coach said he believes his team will have a strong campaign and credited much of that optimism to the squad’s supporting cast.

“We appreciate (Demopolis Parks and Recreation Director) Mark Pettus and (golf course manager) Johnny Brooker for letting us come out here and play. We couldn’t do it without them letting us use the course,” Black said. “We’ve (also) got some family support. That’s going to take some off me. That helps.”