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FHS golf boys thinking big

Despite having to replace district and region champion Blair White in addition to the solid play of Carl May from last season’s Farragut High School boys golf team — which finished No. 5 in the Class AAA state tourney — head coach Mike Driver returns a strong nucleus.

Throw in a strong transfer player from 2004 Class AAA state champ Jefferson County, and the Admirals are thinking big.

If the team reaches its potential, “hopefully we’ll place higher this year,” Driver said. “To win the state you have to have five guys that consistently can shoot eighty or below.”

Brandon Bunn, Charlie Holman and Jason Brittain form the core of the 2005 team. “All three of those guys have played, at some point or the other, for the last two years, and Brandon the last three years in the [team’s] top five,” Driver said.

“Charlie’s played in a lot of tournaments this summer. ... Brandon’s played real well this summer and he’s getting a lot of looks by colleges, and Charlie’s getting a lot of looks by colleges.”

Bunn said, “I’ve worked a lot on the short game, so my putting and short game’s a whole lot better. “I’ve been hitting it a lot better since last year.”

Bunn’s improvement has been helped along by playing in “six or seven tournaments this year,” winning the Southeastern Junior Tour 36-hole event in Fort Payne, Ala., in late May (68-70).

“Jason’s one of those players, he doesn’t play in a lot of tournaments, but he’s a player ... he doesn’t play a whole lot, but when he comes out and plays he hits the ball real well,” Driver said.

Jordan Knight, the other FHS senior, “really wants to do well, he just needs to work on his game,” Driver said.

Driver said Tyler Schaeffer looks to be the team’s No. 5 player “based on qualifying scores. He hits the ball a long, long way. He probably hits the ball as far as anybody on the team. He’s just got to be able to control it. I think he’s getting better at it, doing a much better job of course management.”

John Minor Jr. is a junior transfer from 2004 Class AAA state champion Jefferson County, where he played No. 4. “I think he’s going to make an immediate impact,” Driver said. “He’ll probably start out playing number four for us.”

Sophomore Michael Reeves “really works on his game and I think he’ll be able to help us down the road this year,” Driver said. Sophomore Riley Hunley, an FHS basketball player, was praised by Driver for his athleticism.

Freshmen Patrick Thomas and Elliott Winckenden “can contribute pretty quickly for us.” Driver said. “I think they’ll both get better for us.”

“I had a really bad first day and pretty decent second day (78-72),” Bunn said, who finished in the top five in the district tournament.

last year off the tee I really struggled with the driver and I just couldn’t keep it in play ... I was hitting it really bad. This year I’m finally starting to hit it good. ...”

followed by a sixth-place finish in a Southeastern Junior Tour tourney in Birmingham (74-71), “which was a little better tournament,” Bunn said.

Among American Junior Golf Association events, “I placed eleventh in one, which is OK, and I think I finished seventeenth in another,” Bunn said of the 54-hole event. “I seemed to always have a bad rounds in those A-J-G-As, and two decent or pretty good rounds. The A-J-G-As are a lot more competitive.”

As for his 2005 Admirals, “For myself I’d like to be All-[Knoxville], one of the best, and I’d like to try to win district, region and state — and for the team, do the same,” Bunn said. “We’ve got a pretty good team ... a pretty good shot.”


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