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Cunningham ready to break state wall
KCHS’s Icuss has fresh mental approach

Alec Cunningham said she’s tired of merely coming close to girls golf state tournament qualification.

“All three years I’ve come within either one stroke or one place,” said Cunningham, a Knoxville Catholic senior, about failing to qualify for the 2007 and 2008 Class A/AA state tourneys or last year in Class AAA.

However, as District 4-AAA individual champ last fall, Cunningham (pictured) did lead her Knoxville Catholic Lady Irish to the 2009 district tournament title in the program’s inaugural season among Division I Class AAA opponents.

Cunningham ended Tennessee Golf Association Junior Tour play ranked No. 9 in 15-18 girls statewide in 2010.

Colin Moskal, KCHS head coach, labeled Cunningham “a good, solid player. She hits it a long way and has gotten better and better this summer.”

Though senior Alex Lowe “is kinda tiny, she hits it a long way,” Moskal said about last year’s No. 2 player. Also looking to contribute is freshman Alexa Pavon.

Meanwhile, sophomore Stuart Smith and senior Philip Icuss will lead Catholic’s boys minus three top golfers from 2009’s Region 2-AAA runner-up team.

Moskal labeled Icuss “a good ball-striker; he’s a solid player.”

Icuss said, “I’ve improved my mental game the most. ... Just understanding that I wasn’t getting any better beating myself up.”

Smith, who began the season as team No. 1, is “a very consistent player,” Moskal said. Preston Tucker, a sophomore, is No. 3 followed by freshman No. 4 Joe Willenborg, junior Travis Rodgers and seniors Wesley Monarach, Jackson Schaffer and Bradley Cheek.


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