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Statesboro comes up a bit short at its own tournament
SHS golf
Statesboro High's Ford Berger follows through on his drive on the firs hole of Saturday's Statesboro Invitational, held at the Georgia Southern University Golf Course. - photo by JOSH AUBREY

Being the host team for a major golf match isn’t as easy as it may sound. Just ask the Georgia Southern Eagles, who struggled for years at the Schenkel Invitational before finally breaking through.

On Saturday, the Statesboro Blue Devils hosted their annual Statesboro Invitational at the Georgia Southern  University golf course, and the usually solid team struggled to a round of 343 and a fifth place finish out of 11 boys teams. The Statesboro girls finished eighth out of 12 teams on hand.

“You always want to win at home, and I feel like we probably pressed a little today,” said Statesboro coach David Elmore. “Today we just didn’t play our best. The conditions were great and so was the course, we just didn’t perform very well.”

While things may not have gone the way the Blue Devil players and coaches would have liked, the tournament was a huge success. The GSU course has had its hand in hosting numerous prestigious tournaments since opening four years ago and Elmore expects it to continue to grow in the future.

“We had over 100 players from everywhere from North Forsyth, down to Glynn Academy,” Elmore said. “Georgia Southern has a great facility, and the coaches were all raving about how nice it looked and the condition it was in. I expect an even bigger turn out next year.”

Pierce County was the big winner on the day as its boys and girls teams both secured tournament titles. South Effingham was second on the girls side, while the Metter boys placed second. 

Low individual medalists were Evan Thompson from Grayson with a 71. Sutton Collins from Ware County fired an 83 for top girls honors.

The Statesboro boys were paced by Ford Berger, who carded an 83. Savannah Barefoot led the way for the girls with a 99.

Statesboro will try to bounce right back as it hosts a match Thursday at Forest Heights Country Club to wrap up the regular season. The Blue Devils will then head to Waycross to participate in the area tournament, scheduled to take place May 8.