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Hubs take county title

August 19, 2004|by TIM KOELBLE

koelble@herald-mail.com

Jimmy Connor was the No. 5 man and North Hagerstown coach Kevin Hartman's wild card at Wednesday's Washington County high school golf championship at Black Rock Golf Course.

As scores were being reported, the anticipation level increased as officials waited for Connor to arrive from the 14th hole, his finishing location after the shotgun start.

Connor's 5-over-par 77 helped North Hagerstown to the team title in the season-opening event with 314 team strokes, nine shots better than Smithsburg and defending champion Williamsport.

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Connor's total matched that of teammate Steve Hutzell, while Matt Wagner shot a 79 and Jared Zampelli fired an 81- the top four individual scores combine to make up the team score - to unseat the Wildcats.

Williamsport and Smithburg tied for second with 323. Boonsboro was next at 330 - including Nick Zaccaria's 75 for medalist honors - followed by South Hagerstown at 365 and Clear Spring at 425.

"We've got seven seniors this year so I knew we would be strong," Hartman said. "I was encouraged how they played throughout the summer in junior golf. Steve's playing well is no surprise. With Jimmy, he could shoot anywhere between 70 and 90. ... You just never know with him."

Connor was even through 10 holes when he chipped in for a birdie on the 160-yard, par-3 seventh to go to 1-under par.

"I've played a lot this summer and this is my best round," Connor said. "I hit the ball well ... dead on straight. I think we're so much better as a team this year that if we play like this all year we can get to the states. That's what I want as a senior."

Zaccaria, Smithsburg's Brandon Sheaffer and Williamsport's Andy Mellott were in a threesome that started on No. 1, taking the medalist battle to the finish.

Zaccaria and Sheaffer were deadlocked and Mellott was one behind when they teed off on the 386-yard, par-4 18th.

Sheaffer, in a difficult position off the green, had a chip and lipped out a par putt for bogey. Mellott drove far right, had to take a drop from the hazard and finished with a double bogey.

Meanwhile, Zaccaria just missed an uphill 15-foot putt, tapping in for a par and medalist honors.

Sheaffer ended with a 76. Mellott had a 78 and tied for fourth with Smithsburg's Alicia Grier. Williamsport's Matt Weber shot a 79.

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