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David Walsh: Virginia tops W.Va. at Greenbrier Resort

May. 05, 2013 @ 12:10 AM

Pat Carter and Sam O'Dell helped West Virginia make a positive showing in singles, but it wasn't enough to keep Virginia from winning the 30th Virginia vs. West Virginia Team Matches last weekend on the Snead Course at The Greenbrier Sporting Club in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va.

Virginia came out on top, 53.5 to 30.5, to retain "Ye Ole' Feudin Stick" for another year. Format was foursomes and four ball on Saturday and singles on Sunday. Each team had 14 players. Virginia has won 18 of the last 20 matches. West Virginia's last win came in 2009 at Pete Dye Golf Club in Bridgeport.

"They had a lot of new players and their seniors were really strong," Carter said.

Carter and O'Dell were paired together for both sessions Saturday and managed just 1/2 point in each. Both former Marshall University golfers won by 3-0 counts on Sunday to tie for team-high in points with four. On the senior side, Scott Bibbee and Steve Fox of Huntington each posted a team-high 31/2 points.

"Sam and I were disappointed in our team play," Carter said. "One went down to the wire and we gave one away."

Carter, who learned last week he and Julius Pollock of Wheeling make up the 2013 Class for the West Virginia Golf Hall of Fame, has plotted a busy schedule for 2013. He'll defend the West Virginia Mid-Amateur title on May 10-12 at Berry Hills Country Club in Charleston. "It's a great course for match play," Carter said of Berry Hills. "It has a lot of scary shots."

Carter's then headed to Chicago and the Cascades Course at The Homestead Resort in Hot Springs, Va., for four-ball tournaments. Next come the West Virginia Four Ball, Sunnehanna Amateur, West Virginia Open (a tournament he's never won) and the the PGA Tour's Greenbrier Classic on July 1-7 at The Greenbrier Resort. He'll defend his West Virginia Amateur crown on Aug. 5-8 at The Greenbrier. He's won that event 13 times.

GOVERNOR CELEBRATES MILESTONE: Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin got in some chipping practice Tuesday on the state Capitol grounds as he celebrated a Mountain State milestone. Tomblin proclaimed 2013 as the "100th year of golf in West Virginia." He presented the proclamation to Ken Tackett and Philip Reale of the West Virginia Golf Association.

"For a century, the people of our great state have enjoyed round after round of golf on challenging courses. Whether you're the young golfer, or the more experienced senior player, it's great to get out on one of our breathtaking courses, and tune your skills," Tomblin said. "Thanks to the West Virginia Golf Association's youth programs, I believe the game will be around for many years to come."

Sam Goodwin hit a few shots with the governor. The 9-year-old is part of the association's First Tee program (age 8-14) which is aimed at getting kids involved in the sport. Other programs for juniors include Little General Juniors (age 5-8) and Callaway Junior Tour (age 10-18).

The First Tee of West Virginia is now incorporated in the physical education curriculum in every elementary school in Kanawha County through the National Schools Program. The program educates juniors on the inherent values that are learned through the game. Students learn The First Tee's Nine Core Values, which include honesty, integrity, responsibility, perseverance and more.

Summer programs will begin June 3 and continue for six weeks. The second session will begin July 22. One site is the Huntington YMCA.

Tackett, executive director of the WVGA, said he'd like to have the First Tee Program in every school (450 elementary schools) by 2020.

David Walsh can be reached at 304-526-2759.

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