October 25, 2014

Elyria
Partly sunny with showers
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High school golf: Avon soars to easy title

COLUMBIA STATION — Avon had a great tuneup Wednesday for its West Shore Conference Tournament at Sweetbrier today.

The Eagles are the favorite to win today’s league tournament after going 14-0 in the dual match season and winning Wednesday’s Lorain County Coaches Association tournament with a 317 team score on the tough private course at Columbia Hills.

Avon was led to Wednesday’s title by Danny Kelley, who shot a 2-over 73 to claim medalist honors.

Elyria High finished second at 329, followed by Columbia at 332 and Midview at 345.

“They did pretty well, considering nobody has ever played this course before,” Avon veteran coach Jeff Stephens said. “This should give us some momentum going into the conference tournament. All six of our players have been playing well all season.”

Kelly tied his career low with a 73 at the Ranger Invitational at Avon Oaks earlier this season. He had four birdies Wednesday and only two double bogeys.

“I was solid today on my approach shots,” Kelly said. “And when I was putting I made all the ones I had to make.” His longest putt was a 20-footer for par on the 18th green.

The senior was also happy with his drives.

“I was able to keep them in play except for just two bad drives,” he said.

He had a 325-yard drive on the 16th hole.

Kevin Koepp, who has been solid all season, shot a 79 to pace Elyria’s runner-up finish.

He was inconsistent on the first nine with a 44, but finished strong on the second nine with an even 35, getting birdies on two of his last five holes.

“I got on a roll,” he said. “I don’t know what was wrong on the first nine.”

Koepp sparked his great second nine by chipping in two approach shots from 10 yards off the green on the 15th and 18th holes.

Taylor Stephens paced Midview with a 79, his career low, even without getting any birdies. The senior had nines of 43 and 36.

“I putted really well and also was solid off the tees,” he said.

His longest drive was a crushing 320 yards down the middle on the eighth fairway.

Mike Campana’s 79, on nines of 40 and 39, was a big boost for Amherst, which finished fifth.

He had just one birdie, and it was a beauty. He hit an 8 iron out of a fairway bunker and it rolled to within 3 inches of the cup for a tap-in birdie on the 410-yard 13th hole.

“My short game, pitching and putting were the best part of my game today,” he said.

Campana’s best tournament round this year was a 73 for medalist honors at the North Olmsted Invitational at Springvale.

Avon’s team scorers were Kelly with 73, Ryan Sikora with 80, Sam Stepchuk with 82 and Joe Clifton with 82.

Elyria’s scorers were Koepp with 79, Mat McFrederick with 82, Ryan Messer with 84 and Bono Fairchild with 84.

TEAM STANDINGS: Avon 317, Elyria 329, Columbia 332, Midview 345, Amherst 348, Avon Lake 350, North Ridgeville 355, Keystone 388, Vermilion 391, Wellington (no team score, only three players).

TOP INDIVIDUALS: Danny Kelley, Avon, 73; Zach Stopper, Columbia, 78; Kevin Koepp, Elyria, 79; Taylor Stephens, Midview, 79; Mike Campana, Avon, 79.

Contact Jerry Rombach at 329-3175 or ctsports@chroniclet.com.