On Saturday at Hidden Creek Golf Club, the Providence boys’ golf team collected a familiar piece of hardware — the Southern Indiana Open championship trophy.
The Pioneers shot a team score of 308 to win the 20th annual tournament for the third time in four years and the sixth time overall. Providence had four players shoot in the 70s, much to the delight of Pioneers’ head coach Ken Allender.
“I’m pretty happy with the four scores in the 70s,” Allender said. “I feel pretty good about where we are going right now. If we can tighten the corners a little bit, that would be great.”
The SIO’s key matchup was the battle for medalist honors between Henryville senior Evan Embry and Providence senior Bryce Very.
Embry nipped Very by one stroke, as the Hornet standout fired a 1-over-par 73 to collect a medalist award for the 10th time in 2012. Embry made five birdies, including chipping one in on the par-4 18th hole to conclude his round. He had eight pars, four bogeys and one double bogey.
Henryville head coach Robin Embry said Evan Embry wanted to redeem himself at the SIO after he shot a 92 in the tournament a year ago.
“That’s probably the one day last year that he struggled. He wanted to play a good round today and he did,” Coach Embry said. “He’s still gaining in confidence. But part of it is his work ethic. He’s really dedicated and he’s earned that confidence.”
Very’s 2-over 74 included 11 pars, a pair of birdies, two bogeys and two double bogeys. The IUPUI signee also made an eagle on the par-5 fourth hole.
“Bryce had it going early,” Allender said. “He never goes super low, but he’s always right there.”
Allender commented that this is not the first time that Very and Evan Embry have tried to outperform each other in the same tourney.
“Embry is a good player and those two have gone neck-and-neck in a lot of events they’ve played in before,” Allender said.
Coach Embry complimented Very’s round afterwards.
“Bryce is a really good player and Providence has got a couple of other good players,” the Hornets’ coach said. “Evan is one of the best players in the area. Sometimes it comes down to getting a lucky break or two.”
Junior Cory Cahalan recorded the Pioneers’ second-lowest score with a 77, placing him fourth in the individual standings. Cahalan had four bogeys, three birdies, three double bogeys and an eagle on the par-4 12th.
Teammates Mitchell Allender and Elliott Happel fired a 78 and 79, respectively. Providence junior Robert Waiz ended up with an 84.
Coach Allender thinks winning the SIO should give his players some momentum heading into the Providence Sectional in three weeks at Covered Bridge Golf Club.
“I’m happy with the progress of all these guys,” the Providence mentor said. “Cory didn’t hit the ball great today, but he found a way to have a good round.”
New Albany finished second for the third time in four years with a team score of 321. Senior Corey Embry, last year’s SIO medalist, was the only Bulldog to shoot in the 70s with a 78. New Albany seniors Tyler Banet and Damon Nelson each scored an 80, while teammate Johnny Smith fired an 83. Junior Dustin Miller chipped in an 87.
Jeffersonville wound up fourth with a 341. Three Red Devils shot in the 80s — Dalton Naiser with an 81, Jordan Lacy with an 83 and Dillon Willis with an 87. Jeff senior Zack Lovan had a 90.
Henryville placed sixth with a 360. Robin Embry liked the round he got out of Hornet junior Mitchell Fields, who had an 86.
“I was really happy with Mitchell. Team-wise, we’re coming together,” Coach Embry said.
Silver Creek finished seventh with a 362. Freshman Sam Garr paced the Dragons with a 79, followed by teammate Collin Tingle with an 85.
Borden finished 10th with a 382, tournament host Charlestown was 11th with a 395 and Clarksville ended up 12th with a 412.
Borden’s lowest score an 89 by Matt Smith. The Pirates’ Doug Wolfe fired a team-low 89, and the Generals’ Nick Cappola shot an 81.
SOUTHERN INDIANA OPEN
at Hidden Creek Golf Club, Sellersburg, par-72
Team scores — Providence 308, New Albany 321, Scottsburg 338, Jeffersonville 341, Lanesville 359, Henryville 360, Silver Creek 362, West Washington 367, North Harrison 369, Borden 382, Charlestown 395, Clarksville 412.
Providence — Very 74, Cahalan 77, Waiz 84, Allender 78, E. Happel 79.
New Albany — Banet 80, Embry 78, Nelson 80, Miller 87, Smith 83.
Jeff — Lovan 90, Lacy 83, Naiser 81, Willis 87, Baldwin 105.
Henryville — Embry 73, Gray 98, Fields 86, Furnish 103, Reister 116.
Silver Creek — Tingle 85, Garr 79, Duncan 113, McCartney 101, Ricketts 97.
Borden — Smith 89, Wagoner 92, McCombs 98, Cook 103.
Charlestown — Wolfe 89, Terry 104, Watson 103, Jackson 99, Heil 112.
Clarksville — Cappola 81, Murrell 104, Fisher 101, Fox 126, Bisoso 137.