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Randolph, boys sophomores to lead FHS golf 2007

While the defending Class AAA girls state golf champion Farragut Lady Admirals return one key player, Mike Driver’s boys are loaded with talented sophomores hoping to lead FHS to its first boys team state tourney since 2004.


Among a 16-team field in the annual Morristown Invitational earlier this month, Farragut won as a team with FHS golfers placing third, fourth and fifth.

“We’ve got a really strong boys team, I think, this year,” Driver said. “We’ve got a real strong sophomore class.

“We’ve got a young team, only one senior on the team.”

Sophomore Hayden Anderson not only qualified for the TSSAA Class AAA state tournament as a freshman, but finished among the top 10 “and had a great season,” Driver said. “He played a lot of golf this summer on some of the junior tours. Has a lot of potential, works very hard.” At Morristown, Anderson finished fifth.

Sophomore Davis Bunn won the District 4-AAA Tournament last fall as a freshman, “and just barely missed going to state” with a 75 in the Region 2-AAA tourney.

“He’s played [No.] one for us some this year, and he’s really gotten off to a good start,” Driver said. “I think Davis is one of those consistent golfers we need. I have a lot of faith in him.” A “very consistent” effort in Morristown led to Bunn’s fourth-place finish.

Sophomore Brandon Rodgers “has played all over the United States and the South this summer, a lot of junior events,” Driver said of his other state qualifer returning this season. The 2006 defending champion at the annual Morristown tournament, Rodgers took third in 2007. “He’s off to a pretty good start this year,” Driver said. “I’m counting on him. … I think he’ll have a tremendous year. He has so much potential.”

Senior Michael Reeves “has played, usually in the five position for us, the last couple of years … I think he’s going to be fighting for that four or five position this year.”

Junior Elliott Wickenden rounds out the Admirals current top five rotation. Wickenden lost in a region tourney playoff that would have sent him to state. “He’s been playing well … probably around that [No.] four spot for us,” Driver said. “He’s got a beautiful swing, a lot of power.”

Driver labels junior Patrick Thomas as “probably our biggest surprise,” praising his 74 at Fox Den in a four-way match against Chattanooga McCallie, Halls and Webb School. “He’s really made strides in his game between this year and last year. Right now he’s probably playing as well as anybody on the team.”

Junior Jimmy Knight “plays a lot of golf, very competitive … he qualified to play in the state junior amateur along with about four or five of our other guys earlier in the summer,” Driver said.

Juniors Ben Selecman and Andy Mencer are first-year members of the team. “Ben came out and played real well in the qualifier; Andy hits the ball a long way.”

Recently splitting his team up yet winning a match with his bottom six players, “That shows how strong this team is,” Driver said. “We play with guys who may be the 10th man on the team and still beat a lot of other good teams.”

Sophomore Jordan Lockler, a team member as freshman, “is getting a little bit more size, he’s hitting the ball a little bit longer,” Driver said. “He works real hard.”

Driver praised freshman Taylor Diegel for his recent nine-hole effort of one-over-par 37. “That showed me that under pressure I can count on him to play well.”

Despite a two-season absence from the state tourney, “I expect us to always go to the state tournament,” Driver said. “I think we’ve got the people to do it.”


Alyssa Randolph, the only senior, “has had a great summer, she’s played all over the United States,” Driver said. “She qualified for the U-S Girls Junior … in Tacoma, Wash.” after finishing fourth in a qualifying event in Clarksville, joining Webb School’s Leigh Henderson out west. “[Alyssa] didn’t get match play, but it was a great experience for her.

“She played pretty much every weekend this summer, and that’s pretty much what you’ve got to do between your junior and senior year, which has given her an opportunity to play in the S-E-C.”

Talented enough to play on the major college level, Randolph’s college choice will likely “be somewhere in the S-E-C, she’s got a couple of schools she’s looking at that have already offered,” Driver said.

Having played “O-K” at the Morristown Invitational, finishing fifth out of 14 teams, the Farragut girls’ highlight was a second-place finish by Randolph.

Junior Hannah Berman was the No. 4 Lady Admiral for the 2006 state champs. “She’s really committed herself to it,” Driver said.

Sophomore Meredith Manning, new to the FHS golf team, “is excited about playing, she’s working hard on her game. This year’s going to be a learning year.”

Freshman Stephanie Lockler has played No. 2 and No. 3 so far. “She has a pretty good tournament down in Chattanooga,” Driver said. “She hits the ball well.”

Freshman Chelsea Passmore, who played No. 3 at the Preview Tournament in Chattanooga, “has good size, and a lot of power in her swing, hits the ball extremely long … she’s got a tremendous amount of potential,” Driver said.


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