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Memorials' Trevor Vega has rough day, advances to regionals anyway

By jhornberg
April 15, 2010 at 10:05 p.m.
Updated April 14, 2010 at 11:15 p.m.

Memorial's Trevor Vega reacts after ringing the cup on the sixth green, missing a birdie during the District 27-5A Tournament on Thursday at Victoria Country Club.

DISTRICT 27-5A BOYS GOLF TOURNAMENT

Players played two days at Victoria Country Club. The top two teams advance to the regional tournament at Palm View in McAllen. Along with those two teams, the top two finishers not on those two teams advance. TOP TEAM SCORES: Corpus Christi King 646; Corpus Christi Carroll 649; Memorial A 698; Converse Judson A 722.

TOP INDIVIDUAL SCORES: Vance Edwards (CCK) 153; Matt Charles (CCC) 155; John Rafael (CCK) 156; James Ragan (CCC med.) 157; Trevor Vega (MEM) 160; Joseph Bernal (CCC) 162; Marcus Vargas (CCC) 164; Jacob Garza (CCK) 165; Nathan Bomba (CCC) 169; Chris Godwin (SAEC) 170.

For Trevor Vega, it was like playing in a tornado.

"It seemed like the rain was horrible, but when we got out here, the wind was picking up and blowing all different directions and swirling," said the sophomore golfer for Memorial.

On Wednesday, it was the rain that played with the golfers in the District 27-5A tournament. On Thursday, it was a strong northwest wind that hampered the day for several players, drying out the slow greens players saw the day before and blowing tee shots way off course.

Vega and the rest of the Memorial A team weren't immune. Three of the team's five players, including Vega, shot a score higher than the previous day.

"I started slow, couldn't get anything going, and I finished even slower," Vega said. "I wasn't clicking on all cylinders. It was pretty disappointing."

He followed his score from Wednesday of 76, which had him in contention for the top individual spot, with an 84, pushing him back to fifth overall.

"Making solid contact is key, and yesterday I did that and today I didn't," he said.

Still, Vega qualified as a medalist for the regional tournament for the second year in a row, as Memorial closed out its last season with a third-place finish at the district tournament with a two-day score of 698, well behind Corpus Christi Carroll (649) and Corpus Christi King (646).

"Certainly, we were pressing a bit because we had to make up some strokes," said Memorial coach Fred Neuman. "That's exactly what happened out here on a windy day, with the pin placements as they were, and an extremely challenging course."

Still, there were moments for the sophomore golfer on the course. On the third hole, he was able to break through hitting into the wind.

"I hit my driver straight into the wind, probably 200 feet," he said. "I have probably just over 200 feet to the hole, I hit a rope off my 3-iron around the corner to eight feet from the hole, and made the putt."

Neuman said Vega is a talented golfer who had a few struggles on Thursday.

"I'm always proud of him, and he always performs well," he said. "Today was a bit more of a grind for him than he normally has to do as far as playing at Victoria Country Club or Colony [Creek], but he was able to do it.

"Easily he finds a few more fairways, hits a few more greens in regulation and makes more putts. Today, he was grinding it out, and he was able to do it and advance."

Vega will now turn his attention to the regional tournament. Neuman said nerves shouldn't be an issue, since it will be his second year attending as a medalist.

"He knows the level of play he's going to face," he said. "But I'm sure he's excited because, one, he's just a sophomore, and two, he gets a chance to advance to state."

TOURNAMENT NOTES

DOWN TO THE WIRE: King and Carroll won the team competition, but the Tigers almost overtook the Mustangs in the end. Carroll, back 13 strokes after the first day, closed the deficit, losing by just three thanks to improvements from three players, including junior Matt Charles, who followed up his opening round 7-over 79 with a 4-over 76.

He tied King's Vance Edwards, who took top individual honors, with the best score for the second day.

"When we first started, we were really lucky to come in on a day with a 360," said Carroll coach Hugh Burks. "So we've really come a long way."

Added King coach Steve Barton: "The tournament was tough, the schools were well matched. After 640-plus strokes, to be only three strokes apart, it was close, very very close."

San Antonio East Central's Chris Godwin, who along with his teammates brought out the rally caps for today's second round, won a tie breaker for the second medalist spot against San Antonio Highlands' Steen Ramirez.

Godwin had a eight-shot improvement from his first day score, shooting an 81 on Thursday to make it into the tiebreaker after shooting an 89 the first day.

PLAYING FOR SOMETHING: Carroll medalist James Ragan led all golfers after the first day with a 2-over 74. Although he finished shooting an 83 on the second day, good for top medalist, he won't be taking the seat.

Instead, Ragan, who is battling a major illness, will be at Augusta National Golf Club next week, playing the course as part of Make a Wish organization.

Carroll coach Burks said Ragan is part of the team, often playing as a medalist because his treatment doesn't allow him to make many of the tournaments.

"I always include James in playing all of our tournaments," Burks said. "He just loves the game, plus he's No. 2 in his class."

HANGING IT UP: This wasn't just the last season for Memorial. Carroll coach Burks, who has previously worked as a guidance counselor at the high school in Corpus Christi, is retiring from coaching as well at the end of the year.

The 65-year-old coach said he is familiar with many of the golfers on most of the teams, including Vega, through his involvement in TSPGA.

ALL FOR ONE? Neuman said there are 26 players on the team, and only two seniors, including Maxey. All four of the team's other top golfers - Vega, Hawes, junior Klayton Koch and sophomore Trent Lee - will be going to Victoria West next season, Vega said. Neuman will be joining them as well.

But, he said, there should be enough talent for both schools based on the size of the program.

"We have 26, and of the 26, three are seniors," Neuman said. "We should have plenty of experience and plenty of golfers for both schools."

IMPROVISING: Memorial senior David Maxey struggled with the putter on Wednesday, and after a mishap on the seven hole, played without one. He used a hybrid driver for the rest of the day.

"I ended up putting better with that than I did with my regular putter," the senior golfer said.

A PREVIEW? The blustery conditions Thursday at Victoria Country Club may give players advancing to the regional a preview of what lay ahead. Neuman said Palm View in McAllen, where the regional tournament is set to be held, is a windy course that can greatly affect the players on it.

DISTRICT 27-5A BOYS GOLF TOURNAMENT

at Victoria Country Club

Par 72, Final Round

TOP TEAM SCORES: Corpus Christi King 646; Corpus Christi Carroll 649; Memorial A 698; Converse Judson A 722.

TOP INDIVIDUAL SCORES: Vance Edwards (CCK) 153; Matt Charles (CCC) 155; John Rafael (CCK) 156; James Ragan (CCC med.) 157; Trevor Vega (MEM) 160; Joseph Bernal (CCC) 162; Marcus Vargas (CCC) 164; Jacob Garza (CCK) 165; Nathan Bomba (CCC) 169; Chris Godwin (SAEC) 170.

CORPUS CHRISTI KING 316-330 - 646: Vance Edwards 77-76 - 153; John Rafael 77-79 - 156; Jacob Garza 80-85 - 165; Neel Ahuja 82-96 - 178; Diego Baldwin 83-90 - 173.

CORPUS CHRISTI CARROLL 329-320 - 649: Marcus Vargas 81-83 - 164; Matt Charles 79-76 - 155; Nathan Bomba 85-84 - 169; Joseph Bernal 84-77 - 162; Aaron Ramirez 84-92 - 176.

MEMORIAL A 345-353 - 698: Trevor Vega 76-84 - 160; David Maxey 88--92 - 180; Shannon Hawes 88-94 - 182; Klayton Koch 93-86 - 179; Trent Lee 93-91 - 186.

CONVERSE JUDSON A 355-367 - 722: Jake Boggus 84-88 - 172; Sammie Goldfarb 84-93 - 177; Cody Christian 87--87 - 174; Ian Coleman 101-99 - 200; Ryan Vest 100-115 - 215.

SAN ANTONIO EAST CENTRAL 365-363 - 727: Chris Godwin 89-81 - 170; Brett Peters 93-92 - 185; Tyler Haecker 90-89 - 179; Tanner Scheel 93-100 - 193; Anthony Rodriquez 109-113 - 222.

MEMORIAL B 370-363 - 733: Kyle Davidson 87-88 - 175; Robert Griego 98-90 - 188; Reid Elder 91-96 - 187; Aaron McAfee 96-89 - 185; Weston Hall 96-98 - 194.

SAN ANTONIO HIGHLANDS 380-389 - 769: Jacob Martinez 91-91 - 182; Steen Ramirez 86-84 - 170; Jason Kalinoski 94-106 - 200; Nicholas Malacara 110-110 - 220; Kevin Cepeda 109-108 - 217.

CONVERSE JUDSON B 493-491 - 984: Dustin Hoffman 128-128 - 256; Greg French 144-NC; Dalton Miller 122-112 - 234; Eric Mosley 113-123 - 226; Alijah Talley 130-128 - 258.

MEDALISTS: James Ragan, C.C. Carroll 74-83 - 157; Tyler Rudy, C.C. King 87-93 - 180; Jeremy Woldert, Memorial 96-113 - 209; Tyler Davis, S.A. East Central 98-114 - 212; Kory Walther, Wagner 100-99 - 199; Alex Davalos, Wagner 104-111 - 215.

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