published Saturday, August 2nd, 2014

Ex-Moc Robb in Scottish Amateur final and other sports news

Recent University of Tennessee at Chattanooga golfer Chris Robb plays today for the championship of the Scottish Amateur in his native country. Robb, who tied for 15th in the NCAA tournament this spring and earned All-America honorable mention, has won seven rounds of match play at Downfield Golf Club and faces Graeme Robertson today. Friday, Robb won 3 and 1 over Jack McDonald after losing the first two holes and then won 4 and 3 over Northwestern University junior Josh Jamieson, who beat British Amateur champion Bradley Neil 3 and 2 in the morning. Robb took command against McDonald with a five-hole stretch on the back nine in which he had an eagle, three birdies and a par. Robb reached the round of 16 in the British Am and won the East of Scotland Championship in late June by eight strokes and the Cameron Corbett Vase in July by four shots.

Soccer

• Tennessee Temple University men's soccer coach Ignacio "Nacho" Ortiz signed two local high school standouts to letters of intent Friday, nine days before practice starts, and both seem to be splendid acquisitions for positions of need. Forward Tad Whitaker, who scored 35 goals for East Ridge this past spring and was all-state and a first-team Best of Preps all-star, had offers to kick for college football teams but chose to stay with the sport he's played since the age of 3. And William Gonzalez, who was a key defender for East Hamilton teams that lost in a state sectional in 2012 and in a state quarterfinal in 2013, comes in as a 19-year-old freshman. He fulfilled graduation requirements last December. He said he also considered Bryan College, where Temple begins its season on Aug. 21, but TTU was closer to his East Brainerd home and will be even closer next year when the school moves to the Tyner area. "And I came to practice with the [the Crusaders] and really like how close they are," Gonzalez said. Whitaker had a similar observation. "They seemed like a real tight family," he said, "and going to a Christian university is something I'm really looking forward to." He scored 22 goals as a Pioneers junior, when he was second-team Best of Preps, and 16 as a sophomore. He had five in a come-from-behind win over Red Bank in a District 6-AA semifinal this year. "His body is built to be the perfect striker," Ortiz said. "He's very quick skillful and very physical, and he's really good in the air. William is a very solid defender. He's kind of a utility defender: I can play him on the outside or the inside, wherever he's needed, and he has a great knowledge of the game and can play physical. He plays week to week in the Hispanic league at Finley Stadium. Both of these guys are very hard workers."

Softball

• Covenant College has hired Brie Carmack as the first full-time assistant for softball coach Sara Russell. Carmack played at Jacksonville University in NCAA Division I and has spent the last two years as a graduate assistant while working on her master's degree at Eastern Illinois, which won the Ohio Valley Conference in 2013 and went 38-17 this past spring. Covenant is a Division III school. "We are ecstatic about Coach Carmack joining our program," Russell said in a school release. "With her expertise and drive, we are bound to take this program to the next level."

Outdoors

• The Mountain Beautiful Trail on the eastern slope of Lookout Mountain is now fully open after part of it was closed because of a rock fall in January 2012. The Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park worked with the Southeast Youth Corp. in rerouting the closed portion, where the trail heads down from the bluff toward the Lookout Mountain Conservancy's Hardy Trail. According to a park release Friday, a six-person drew with two work leaders "built 984 feet of new tread and cleared 8,289 feet of corridor along the Upper Truck Trail."

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