Jackets break through for first win of golf season


Tyler Harris led Middlesboro to a match victory Tuesday at the Wasioto Winds Golf Course.

After a month of hard-luck losses, including a one-stroke loss Monday in the 13th Region All “A” Classic, the Middlesboro Yellow Jackets broke through for a win Tuesday in a tournament at the Wasioto Winds Golf Course in Pineville.
Middlesboro featured a balanced attack with a team score of 168 to edge Bell County by one stroke. Barbourville was third with a 176 and Harlan was fifth with a 232. Knox Central and Harlan County also competed but not as teams.
“It was nice to win a close one,” Middlesboro coach Allen Wilford said. “We’ve lost a lot of close ones, including by one stroke Monday, so this was great for our guys.”
Bell County senior Andrew Caldwell was the individual winner with a two-under par 34, one stroke ahead of Whitley County’s R.J. Osborne and two strokes ahead of Middlesboro’s Tyler Harris. Harlan County seventh-grader Brayden Casolari was tied for fourth with Barbourville’s Charleston Dixon with a 38.
Hayden Clark had the second best score for Bell with a 44, followed by Bub Treece with a 45, William Miracle with a 46 and Gunnar Sams with a 56.
Garrison Warren was second for Middlesboro with a 41 and was followed by Nick Cox with a 45, Warren Vaught with a 46 and Luke Bayless with a 58.
“Garrison had a breakout performance. He was the difference at seven below his average,” Wilford said. “Tyler was a shot below his average. All of our guys played well.”
Aiden Johnson led Harlan with a 47, followed by Carson Murray with a 52, Story Miller with a 63 and Chris Taylor with a 70.
Matt Lewis had a 45 for Harlan County.
“Tonight was the best golf Brayden has played this year by far. He had every aspect of his game going for him. When he did get in trouble he hit great shots to recover. He’s improving every day. This was his best finish of the year and actually a couple shots prevented him from being in the top three,” HCHS coach Greg Lewis said. “Matt didn’t strike the ball as well today as he normally does, but I was very impressed with his round because he battled and pulled a decent round out of what should have been a much higher score. As he develops, the consistency with the changes he’s made he’s going to really start putting up some low scores. We are getting into the meat of our schedule as we start preparing for the regional tournament the end of this month and get to the end of our conference season. Both Matt and Brayden are peaking at the right time. We have some tough events coming up and the courses and conditions are going to get tougher and tougher. They are both ready for a hard push to the end of the season.”