PLAYER OF THE YEAR
The McCallie School senior squatted to mark his ball and just smiled — a big ear-to-ear grin. As long as he didn’t four-putt on the 36th hole of the Division II-AA state tournament, he and his Blue Tornado teammates would be state champions and he would win medalist honors. He two-putted for the victory and kept on smiling. “It was exhilarating,” Clossin recalled. “It was the best feeling of my life, and I was trying to take it all in right there. But I want to go back and get that feeling again.” Clossin was the only individual medalist — boy or girl — from the Chattanooga area in any of the state golf championships this year. He shot a 3-under-par 141 at Wilowbrook Golf Club. “It was the biggest tournament I’ve ever won, and it was so cool,” said Clossin, who could play for Division III Washington & Lee or walk on at Wake Forest next year. “It all happened at once. I’m going to miss it.” Clossin was the runner-up at the City Prep Championship with a 1-under 71 and had the same score in the East/Middle Region tournament. “It really doesn’t seem like I had one bad round,” Clossin said. “It was a perfect season.”
COACH OF THE YEAR
Meyers had a sense that it could be a long season after his McCallie team shot 69 over par and finished next to last in the Baylor Preview. He prepared himself for the fact that his Blue Tornado squad could miss the state tournament. But two months later, he hoisted the Division II-AA state championship trophy after McCallie shot a 595 at Willowbrook Golf Club and beat Briarcrest Christian by eight strokes. “It was a pretty magical season,” Meyers said. “Any time you win state, that’s a good thing. It’s actually a little surprising.” The biggest surprise of Meyers’ season came during the first round of the state tournament. Sophomore No. 5 man Case White shot a 1-under-par 71. “We could win this,” Meyers said that night. The Tornado did win it. “I wasn’t always sure there was a chance we could win it,” said Meyers, whose team also won the City Prep and the Father Ryan Invitational but finished third in its region. “Then after the first day of state, it came to fruition that we had a serious chance of winning state.”
He tied for third at the City Prep, won the Region 4-A/AA title and tied for 15th in the state tournament.
He tied for third in the Region 3-AAA tournament and had a top-25 finish in the state tournament.
He tied for third in the City Prep, was fourth in the East/ Middle Region and had a top-20 state finish.
He tied for third in the City Prep, District 5-AAA and Region 3 tournaments and tied for 14th in the state.
He also tied for third at the City Prep championship and finished fifth in the Division II-AA state event.
He won the City Prep, finished fourth in the Region 4-A/AA tournament and was third in the state.
SPENCER HONEY BAYLOR JUNIOR
GORDON HULGAN MCCALLIE FRESHMAN
TODD KRUM NOTRE DAME SENIOR
RYNE THOMPSON MCMINN COUNTY JUNIOR
KEONI VIDRINE POLK COUNTY SENIOR
WILL ZABO MCMINN COUNTY SOPHOMORE
TEAMS OF THE YEAR
The Blue Tornado’s lineup changed a bit from the City Prep to the Division II state tournament. But they won both prestigious titles with Patrick Clossin leading the way.
2 NOTRE DAME
The Fighting Irish had a stable of golfers who consistently shot in the 70s for 18 holes. They finished third at the City Prep and second in the Class A/AA state tournament.
The Red Raiders didn’t have an upperclassman worthy of a major college scholarship as they’ve had in recent years. Yet the young team finished second in the City Prep and third in the Division II-AA state.
Photos by Laura-Chase McGehee. Text by David Uchiyama. Design by Stacey Wysong.