IT MIGHT be hard to recognize that Jackson County is actually replacing five golfers from last year off a team that placed fifth in the state.
After all, this year’s Panthers are off to a 5-0 start after beating Franklin County 168-172 on the road Tuesday. The perfect mark has been a pleasant surprise to coach Warren Standridge.
“We really weren’t expecting this because we lost so many players off last year’s team,” Standridge said.
Senior York Delloyd and Anthony Whobrey both shot rounds of 38 to lead the Panthers to Tuesday’s win. Ian McGaughey added a 43 and Trey Evans rounded out the scoring with a 49.
Standridge said the whole team is starting to improve as the calendar nears late March.
“We’re really starting to improve and they’re really starting to understand the way we want to do things … They really get excited when they see those scores going down,” coach Warren Standridge said.
Standridge gives a lot of credit to the more experienced players on the team — Delloyd, Whobrey and McGaughey — for taking leadership roles
Delloyd, the lone senior, has been a standout golfer for four years with the Panthers. McGaughey is a junior and Whobery is a sophomore.
“They’ve done a really good job of keeping the younger kids focused,” Standridge said.
Jackson County will be plenty busy over the next few days. The team resumes play today (Wednesday) at Traditions of Braselton Golf Course against Stephens County and Clarke Central (4 p.m.). The Panthers then play Friday against Clarke Central in Athens, followed by a trip to the Gordon Lee Invitational Saturday and then to the Big Red Shootout in Gainesville Monday.
So far, Standridge is happy with what he’s seeing from this new group.