Buckeye Trail, Wheeling Park take golf titles

WHEELING – A lot of golfers claim that the Crispin Center Golf Course at Oglebay Park can be had for a low number when conditions are right.

Conditions were perfect for scoring Thursday afternoon as the OVAC Golf Championship wrapped up at Oglebay with the 3A schools testing their mettle on the par 71 course.

For the first time in school history, Buckeye Trail claimed the top spot, posting a sizzling team total of 291. That was five shots better than Linsly, which was seeking its 16th team title, but first in 3A after moving up a class for this school year.

The Warriors placed three players on the all-OVAC squad en route to the title, which made ammends for last year’s runner-up finish to Martins Ferry, which bumped up to Class 4A this year.

“This was a school record for lowest round,” said Warriors’ head coach and OVAC Tournament Director Mike Castello.

“I was certainly glad when I saw that Martins Ferry had moved up, but this was a great team effort by our guys today.”

The Warriors were fueled to the crown by senior Jessi Roe, who posted a 2-under round of 69. He used a strong back nine en route to the title.

Justin Wilson and Collin Streiff each posted rounds of 72 to earn themselves a spot on the all-tournament team. Jed Burga and Austin Warehime each posted a round of 78 to round out the Warriors’ roster.

“Linsly had us by four or five strokes after the front nine,” Castello said. “We scored well on the back side and it was enough. We’re hoping to use this as a springboard into the rest of our season.”

Coach Mark Zavatsky’s Cadets put up a solid round in their own right, posting a 295, which the majority of seasons would have been plenty good enough for the top prize.

“If you had told me two or three weeks ago that we’d shoot 295, I would have put that down right then,” Zavatsky said. “The kids are kind of bummed because of how they finished in the last few holes, but they still all shot below their averages. Buckeye Trail just shot better.”

Leading the way for Linsly was a 1-under round by David Coram, which was runner-up medalist. Casey O’Korn was all-OVAC with a solid round of even par 71.

Other members of the all-OVAC team were Magnolia’s Garrett Emch (71) and Fort Frye’s Shon Smith (72).

IN THE 5A Tournament up the road at the Jones Course at Speidel’s Golf Club, the Wheeling Park Patriots notched their 12th OVAC title and fifth in a row by 12 strokes over University.

The Patriots were led by freshman standout Cole Hand, who shot a 2-under 69 for the medalist honor. He was three shots clear of junior standout Thadd Obecny was runnerup with a 1-over 72.

Staskey can be reached at sstaskey@timesleader-online.com