Panthers repeat as CPC champions

Published 2:41 pm Tuesday, April 23, 2024

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The Northside Panthers brought home their second straight Coastal Plains Conference golf championship in grand style Monday at the Carolina Colours Golf Club in New Bern.

The Panthers defeated second place East Carteret by 33 strokes, senior Gavin Sawyer was the medalist to claim Player of the Year honors, Jared Adams won Coach of the Year and Sawyer was one of five Panthers named to the All-Conference team.

“One of our goals at the beginning of the year was to win conference again, so we’ll check that one off the list,” Adams said. “This is basically the same group who won it last year and all of them have improved. We had several consistently shoot in the 90s last year and we wanted to get into the 79s and 80s this spring and we’re getting there.”

Sawyer shot 79 to win the individual title by six shots over teammate Wyatt Berry, Conner Shea of Lejeune and East Carteret’s Finn Diller.

“Gavin has improved the most in the mental part of the game,” Adams said. “He had a tendency to let some bad holes early affect the rest of his round, but he’s learned to battle through and focus on the next hole. He’s also worked through some swing hiccups and put together some solid rounds.”

Claire Holmes finished fifth overall at 86, while Cooper Evans shot 89 to complete the Panthers scoring.
Lejeune was third at 388, Pamlico County shot 400 and Southside came in at 427.

Latham Dixon led the Seahawks with a 98, while Avery Dixon (102), Alex Silva (111) and Alex Crisp (118) completed the Southside scoring.

Berry, Holmes, Evans and Max Vansant joined Sawyer on the All-Conference team.

The other coaches named Adams the coach of the year after the Panthers repeat championship, but he said it was a team effort.

“I appreciate them voting for me, but every coach in this league is deserving because of all the hard work they put in,” Adams said. “My assistant, Barry Norman, has been a big part of our success also. We can split our kids up and he takes six of them to working on chipping and bunker shots or putting, while I’m out on the course with the others. Him being there allows our kids to work on all phases of their game every day and it’s definitely made a difference in our scores.”

The Panthers have one non-conference match next week, then host the 1A East Regional at the Washington Yacht & Country Club May 6.