Playing on its home course at Franklin Valley, South Webster shot a 154, two shots ahead of West's 156, to take a two-shot lead after the second match of the four-match series on Thursday. Both teams shot a 155 in the first match at Shawnee State Golf Course last Thursday, bringing the Jeeps' total to 309 and the Senators' to 311.
Rounding out the scoring on Thursday was Wheelersburg with a 159, Waverly carding a 167, Northwest a 173, Minford a 183 and Valley's 205. Winning medalist honors was the Tigers' Justin Fyffe, who shot a 37.
For South Webster coach Jason Baker, though, it was the 38s that Kyle Ramey and Corey Jackson shot that put the Jeeps in the lead with two matches to go.
“It is a tight race with the top three teams,” said Baker. “Like I have said from the beginning of the season, once we reach that point where we can get four scores in the 30s, that's where we need to be, and we reached it tonight.”
Corey Lawhun and Ryan McAlister each shot a 39, with Matt Haywood carding a 40 and Seth Ashley a 52. After the round, Lawhun said the team finished strong, and head into round three at Dogwood Hills near Waverly with some momentum.
“I was proud of the team. They pulled through with an excellent round today, and hopefully we can head into Dogwood and play pretty solid,” he said.
For West, consistency was the name of the game on Thursday, as its top four scorers - Nathan Brandenburg, Andy Bond, Charlie Cooper and Noah O'Rourke - each shot a 39. Matt Simpson's 40 and Matt Folsom's 46 rounded out the scoring for the Senators.
In a match on Monday, South Webster beat West by six shots. Cutting four strokes on the deficit is a plus for Senators coach Eric Gray, and something that he hopes will carry over into Tuesday.
“If we can go up and play like we are capable of playing at Dogwood Hills, then I believe that we have a chance (to win the SOC), said Gray. “Dogwood is always tough, especially if the weather is bad, and there is a possibility of some rain, making it interesting.”
Wheelersburg's Alan Gulley and Tyler Thompson continued the low-scoring theme on Thursday, shooting 38 and 39 respectively. Charles Floyd had a 40 and Brandon Cline carded a 42, with Andrew Rawlings' 46 and Joe Dials 47 rounding out the scoring. After two rounds, the Pirates are eight shots back with 317 after shooting a 158 in the first match.
“Right now, all I can expect is for us to be in the mix,” said Wheelersburg coach Dave Rucker. “Our kids are trying as hard as they can ... and you never know what could happen at Dogwood.”
Following close behind are Waverly and Northwest. The Tigers shot a 167 on Thursday, led by Fyffe's 37 and 42s by Billy Gullion and Clint Boggs. Shane Rouse and Phillip Tackett's 46s and Van Levier's 64 completed Waverly's scoring.
“That is our lowest round of the year,” said Tigers coach Jason Ramsey. “We definitely needed to have a round like that, because Northwest was right on our heels. I thought our kids played well tonight, as about as well as they could.”
For Fyffe, the round was his best ever, and maybe what Waverly needs heading into it home course.
“I am extremely proud of myself,” said Fyffe. “I had a few bad holes here and there, but I came through and did the best that I could. It is a real nice course, and I was able to hit and put the ball well today.”
Northwest was led by Kyle McCain's 39, with Brian Eichenlaub shooting a 43, Kylon Crabtree a 45 and Jennifer Phillips a 46. Eric Hill had a 50 and Cory Prose added a 57 for coach Brian Sturgill, who hopes his team can continue to improve over the final two matches.
“We didn't play how we should have, but we still had some decent scores,” he said. “We still have a shot, and that is the key. We are looking for some good things, and we still have the Elks (site of match No. 4), so we will see what happens.”
Travis Johnson and Billy Hogue led Minford with 41, with Colin Stimpert shooting a 50 and Casey Zempter a 51. Matt Gampp shot a 60.
“We shot better out there tonight than we did the last time, so that is a positive heading into the third match,” said Falcons coach Jason Miller. “I was especially pleased with Travis Johnson, because that was his low round of the year.”
Rounding out the scoring was Valley, which was led by Trent Burchett's 43 and Matt Evans' 45. Josh Robertson added a 54 and Kyle McPheters a 63.
JOSH HICKLE can be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 241.
SOC II Match No. 2
At Franklin Valley Golf Course
Medalist - Justin Fyffe (WA) 37.
South Webster (154) - Kyle Ramey 38, Corey Jackson 38, Corey Lawhun 39, Ryan McAlister 39, Matt Haywood 40, Seth Ashley 52.
West (156) - Nathan Brandenburg 39, Andy Bond 39, Charlie Cooper 39, Noah O'Rourke 39, Matt Simpson 40, Matt Folsom 46.
Wheelersburg (159) - Alan Gulley 38, Tyler Thompson 39, Charles Floyd 40, Brandon Cline 42, Andrew Rawlings 46, Joe Dials 47.
Waverly (167) - Justin Fyffe 37, Billy Gullion 42, Clint Boggs 42, Shane Rouse 46, Philip Tackett 46, Van Levier 64.
Northwest (173) - Kyle McCain 39, Brian Eichenlaub 43, Kylon Crabtree 45, Jennifer Phillips 46, Eric Hill 50, Cory Prose 57.
Minford (183) - Billy Hogue 41, Travis Johnson 41, Colin Stimpert 50, Casey Zempter 51, Matt Gampp 60.
Valley (205) - Trent Burchett 43, Matt Evans 45, Josh Robertson 54, Kyle McPheters 63.
Totals (After two matches)
1. South Webster155-154 - 309
2. West 155-156 - 311
3. Wheelersburg158-159 - 317
4. Waverly 173-167 - 340
5. Northwest 176-173 - 349
6. Minford 187-183 - 370
7. Valley 197-205 - 402