WHEELING – The Buckhannon-Upshur Buccaneers had plenty to overcome before they took the course Tuesday morning on day one of the two-day tournament in the 2020 West Virginia State High School Golf Championships at the Oglebay Resort’s Jones Course.
The Bucs came out not playing their best golf and shot a 286 which landed them in eighth-place out of eight teams after the first day of competition.
In true Buccaneer fashion though, the team came back on day two much better as they shaved 22 strokes off their day one score with a 264.
The 264 score landed them in fifth on day two, but they couldn’t overcome their day one deficit as they remained eighth overall with a team score of 550.
The Bucs had to deal with issues in Wheeling that no other teams had to deal with prior to the tournament.
Upshur County went orange on the state’s COVID-19 map Saturday, but the team was tested with all the results coming back negative. The team made the trip to Wheeling on Sunday as the county went red, and as a result, the team was told by the WVSSAC they couldn’t play in the state tournament.
Then the county went back to orange on Monday allowing the Bucs to play.
Then the Bucs had their practice round on Monday interrupted as well.
“It was a rollercoaster ride from the beginning,” remarked Buckhannon-Upshur head coach Jason Westfall. “We were supposed to tee off at 9 a.m. Monday morning for our very important practice round. We were finally able to tee off at 4 p.m. and only were able to get through 10 holes before it got too late and then I had to attend a mandatory coaches meeting while they played their practice holes. We don’t make excuses for our play on day one, but I felt that the circumstances were difficult to manage and I felt our team handled it the best that anyone could have.”
On day one for the Bucs, Evan Coffman shot a 90, Isaac Lane a 93, Landon Hitt a 103 and Tucker Hurst a 113.
Every single player improved their score on day two as Coffman fired an 86 and Lane a 90 and Hurst a 105.
Hitt had the biggest improvement as he took 15 strokes off his score to record an 88.
For the tournament, Coffman finished 18th out of 42 golfers with a 176, Lane was 25th with a 183, Hitt was 30th with a 191 and Hurst was 38th with a 218.
“Our first day was difficult but they battled through it,” noted Westfall. “The course and conditions were difficult but that was to be expected. We did not play our best and we knew that. Our attitude on day two was to continue to battle and manage the course better. We had a much improved second day. We improved across the board and I am very proud of that. We could have easily given up considering all they had been through, but they know these are life lessons that will only make them better.”
Westfall said the day two scores were much more on point with how good his Bucs are and can be.
“We showed on day two that we belonged,” stated Westfall. “If we had played day one like we did day two, we show more of our true colors and would have been in the top three or four. Still, we had a tremendous experience, and it will ultimately make us better next year.”
Buckhannon-Upshur’s Region I rival Wheeling Park won the team title with a 486 while George Washington was second with a 489 and Woodrow Wilson was third with a 504.
Region I and Brooke stand-out Ryan Bilby won the individual title with a 149 while Wheeling Park’s Noah Seivertson was second with a 153 and George Washington’s Anderson Goldman was third with a 155.
Westfall said his Bucs already have their eyes on a return to the state tournament next year.
With just one senior on the roster this year (Brady Hurst), Westfall sees no reason why his team can’t perform even better in 2021.
“We celebrated our successful season Wednesday evening after the event, but the next day we immediately shifted to our lofty goals for next season,” said Westfall. “The team was on the golf course on Thursday preparing for next year.”
Westfall also said the support for his team at Wheeling was unprecedented.
“It was great to see some Buckhannon-Upshur alumni and current students that came to show their support this week,” concluded Westfall. We want to thank all those that showed their support throughout the season.”
1. Wheeling Park 486; 2. George Washington 489; 3. Woodrow Wilson 504; 4. Cabell Midland 512; 5. Washington 540; 6. Parkersburg South 541; 7. Jefferson 549; 8. Buckhannon-Upshur 550.
INDIVIDUAL TOP 5
1. Ryan Bilby (Brooke) – 77-72 = 149
2. Noah Seivertson (Wheeling Park) – 78-75 = 153
3. Anderson Goldman (George Washington) – 79-76 = 155
4. Zan Hill (Woodrow Wilson) – 85-76 = 161
5. (tie) Ethan Hardy (Washington) – 79-83 = 162
Cameron Jarvis (Cabell Midland) – 78-84 = 162
Wheeling Park 486
Noah Seivertson 78-75 = 153
James Salvatori 82-84 = 166
Gavin Goodrich 82-85 = 167
Campbell Keogler 86-DNF = DNF
Owen Leary DNF-91 = DNF
George Washington 489
Anderson Goldman 79-76 = 155
Mario Palumbo 87-80 = 167
Austin Willard 85-86 = 171
Emma Nicol 83-88 = 171
Woodrow Wilson 504
Zan Hill 85-76 = 161
Mary Denney 82-89 = 171
Jonah Wilson 85-87 = 172
Tucker Lambert 94-88 = 192
Cabell Midland 512
Cameron Jarvis 78-84 = 162
Taylor Sargent 85-83 = 168
Evan Jarvis 87-95 = 182
Siggi Olafsson 91-DNF = DNF
Caden McComas DNF-95 = DNF
Ethan Hardy 79-83 = 162
Rhett Snyder 93-98 = 191
Jackson Snyder 100-91 = 191
Cael Nick 99-95 = 194
Parkersburg South 541
Mace Busch 78-89 = 167
Dustin Corley 91-90 = 181
Eli Reeves 92-101 = 193
Blake Snyder 93-102 = 195
Trey Barlow 90-91 = 181
Kyle Hibberd 94-90 = 184
Andrew Sudduth 95-93 = 188
Ashton Klein 91-107 = 198
Evan Coffman 90-86 = 176
Isaac Lane 93-90 = 183
Landon Hitt 103-88 = 191
Tucker Hurst 113-105 = 218