State Golf Update: Murphy Finishes with 77, Winds up Tied for 11th
Fellowship Christian School senior Tripp Murphy carded a five-over 77 to wrap up the two-day 36-hole GHSA Class A Private School Golf Championships at Heron Bay Golf & Country Club in Locust Grove with a four-over 148.
Murphy, who opened the tourney with a 1-under 71 on May 21, finished in a tie for 11th place with Kenny Duffin of Hebron Christian Academy (75-73).
Parker Rostowsky of Mount Paran Christian School and William Sluder of Brookstone finished the tournament at five-under par 139 to lead the field of 80 golfers.
“It was a grind today,” FCS golf coach Mike Kinsey said. “It was definitely a tale of two days. One thing about Tripp is he goes hard until the very end. He is never one to quit, and he didn’t today. He improved dramatically over his four-year FCS career. I am so proud to be his coach and watch his progress. He represented us well at state. To God be the glory. Now it’s on to Oglethorpe for Tripp.”
(Photos by Mike Kinsey)
State Golf Update: Murphy Cards 1-Under 71 in Opening Round
Fellowship Christian School senior Tripp Murphy finished with five birdies en route to a 1-under par 71 on May 21 in the opening round of the two-day 36-hole GHSA Class A Private School Golf Championships being played at Heron Bay Golf & Country Club in Locust Grove.
The tournament wraps up on May 22. Murphy enters the final round tied for sixth, two shots off the lead. Three golfers opened the tourney at 69 – Parker Rostowsky of Mount Paran Christian School, William Sluder of Brookstone and Bailey Means of Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School.
Jay Spivey of First Presbyterian and HIES’ Cannon Crane both fired 70s to share fourth, while Murphy, Luke Dasher of First Presbyterian and Will Kahlstorf of Prince Avenue Christian all had 71.
“Tripp had a disappointing bogey, bogey finish,” FCS golf coach Mike Kinsey said. “But, shooting under par for his first 18 holes at state is pretty strong.“
Murphy, who finished with four bogeys on the day, carded a 34 on the front nine and a 37 on the back nine.
“He played an amazing first 16 holes at 3-under,” Kinsey said.
He’ll tee off at 7:50 a.m. on May 22.
(Photos by Mike Kinsey)
State Golf Preview: Murphy Face Field of 80 Golfers
For only the second time in school history, a golfer from Fellowship Christian School has advanced to the state tournament.
Senior Tripp Murphy will play in the two-day, 36-hole GHSA Class A Private School Golf Championships at Heron Bay in Locust Grove May 21-22. There will be a total of 12 teams competing (72 golfers) plus eight individuals that includes Murphy. He tees off at 7:50 a.m. on May 21.
Murphy’s 9-hole season average was a 36. He led the Paladins to an 8-1 record, shooting a 31 and 32 along the way.
At the Region tournament held on April 30 at Cobblestone Golf Course, Murphy shot a 76 to qualify for state.
Of those 80 golfers competing at the state tourney, 19 of them shot 76 or better at their respective Region Tournaments.
“This makes for a very strong field,” head coach Mike Kinsey said. “But, the game of golf is very unpredictable. Anything can happen on any given day. Tripp and I have talked about his mental approach for those two days. We both agreed there was more pressure to make it to state [than playing in it]. Now that he is there, the plan is to relax and enjoy 36 holes of golf.”
Murphy has been a very consistent golfer this season.
“Tripp has incredible physical skills,” Kinsey said. “He has length off the tee, a great short game and solid iron play. He is mentally tough and a fierce competitor. We are both looking forward to him representing Fellowship at the 2018 golf state championship.”
The only other time an FCS golfer competed at state was when freshman Anna Davenport competed at State as an individual and finished sixth overall with an 86) in 2012. She was the Region champion that year.
(Photo by Mike Kinsey)
Swartz Claims Third Place in Long Jump at State Meet, Aycock Eighth in Shot Put
Like many sports, inches or seconds can separate track & field competitors.
Senior Cameron Swartz wrapped up her Fellowship Christian School career with a third-place finish in the long jump at the GHSA Class A Private Track & Field Championships that were hosted by Berry College in Rome on May 11. The three-day meet began on May 10 in Rome.
In her final high school meet, Swartz reached 17 feet in the final of her three jumps to take third place by just two inches. It was her best career finish at the state level in her third trip to the state meet.
Swartz was fourth in the long jump at states in both 2016 and 2015. She did not place in the triple jump but competed in 2016. She did not compete in the 2017 Sectionals, so she did not advance to states.
In a field on nine competitors, senior Tad Aycock placed eighth in the shot put in his first trip to the state event.
This was Aycock’s first season of track & field at FCS.
In Rome, Aycock threw three times. His best toss was a personal-best 45 feet, 9.5 inches.
“It was a great meet for both of them,” head coach Greg Mayhue said. “They both performed well to wrap up their FCS careers.”
(Photos submitted by Greg Mayhue)
Swartz, Aycock to Participate in State Track & Field Meet May 11
Seniors Cameron Swartz (long jump) and Tad Aycock (shot put) will represent the varsity track & field squad from Fellowship Christian School at the GHSA Class A Track & Field Championships being hosted by Berry College in Rome on May 11. The three-day meet began on May 10.
“It would be great for both of them to go out with PRs,” track & field coach Greg Mayhue said. “That would put them both in a great position for wonderful results.”
They both compete in a field of nine performers in their events in Rome.
Aycock has reached state in his only track & field season at FCS. Aycock advanced with an eighth-place finish among nine shot put performers at the Sectional meet held on April 28 at Landmark Christian School. At the Area meet held at Whitefield Academy on April 17, Aycock finished third in the shot put.
“This is a great opportunity for him to compete at the state meet,” head coach Greg Mayhue said. “He did well at Sectionals and Area.”
Heading into the state meet, Aycock has been throwing consistently around 44 feet. “Tad was around 40 in early March, but then reached 42, 44 and then finally 45,” Mayhue said. “If he can reach 46 in Rome, then he is certainly in the mix for a top five finish. He has natural talent and strength, but has developed a strong technique. He is a versatile athlete.”
While it’s Aycock’s first trip to the state meet, it’s Swartz’s third trip. She was fourth in the long jump at the GHSA meet in both 2016 and 2015. She did not place in the triple jump in 2016 at states.
Swartz placed third out of nine performers to advance in the long jump at this year’s Sectional meet. At the Area meet, Swartz placed second in the long jump and was fourth in the triple jump to advance to Sectionals in both events.
“Cameron has a great shot to finish in the top three at states,” Mayhue said. “If she can get a good jump off early it will take the pressure off. If you get a good jump off early, you can relax a bit in the next two rounds.”
For example, she scratched in her first two jumps in the triple jump at Sectionals and did not qualify for states with her third jump.
“Getting that mark in the sand early is key,” Mayhue said.
During her track career at FCS, Swartz was the Area champion in both the triple and long jumps in 2016. She was also second in the long jump at the 2017 Area meet. She did not compete in the 2017 Sectionals, so she did not advance to states.
FCS Girls Fall to 5A Kell High School in Playoff Opener
The Fellowship Christian School varsity girls lacrosse team faced quite a stiff test on May 8.
In the opener of the GHSA Class A-AAAAA Girls Lacrosse Championships, the Lady Paladins fell 20-6 to 5A Kell High School in Marietta. Kell has been to the last four state championship games.
FCS, which won 12 out of its final 14 games, finished a school single-season record 12 victories to finish five matches over .500. The Lady Paladins posted a 7-11 mark in its first varsity season in 2017.
The Lady Paladins made the state playoffs in just their second varsity season.
Juniors Camille Stroud and Kate Buchweitz netted two goals apiece at Kell. Senior Haley Herrmann and sophomore Charlotte Berg each scored a goal.
History-Making Season: FCS Opens GHSA Class A-AAAAA Playoffs on Tuesday
The Fellowship Christian School varsity girls lacrosse team has made history this season.
The Lady Paladins defeated 3A Greater Atlanta Christian School in Norcross on April 25 to wrap up its second varsity regular season. It was the club’s 12th victory out of its last 13 outings. Despite an 0-5 start, the team went on a 12-1 run to advance the GHSA Class A-AAAAA Girls Lacrosse Championships for the first time in school history.
Coaches Allison Senft and Tracy Morgan led the Lady Paladins to a school single-season record of 12-6. The Lady Paladins posted a 7-11 mark in its first varsity season in 2017.
The team opens the playoffs on May 8 at 5A Kell High School at 5:30 p.m.
“It’s super exciting,” Morgan said. “We are more than thrilled for our seniors, who get to close out the year with a playoff experience. They have earned it. We are grateful that the incoming freshmen get to have the same experience. We believe it will help set the tone for seasons to come. Expectations will be high for this team moving forward.”
The team quickly turned around its fortunes under the direction of Senft and Morgan – a pair of first-year FCS coaches – and long-time assistant coach Jeff Buchweitz.
“We framed those losses as scrimmages and told the girls each game was a do-over,” Morgan said. “They earned that first win and apparently liked the taste of it because they just kept going. Their attitudes, drive and the way they played together just soared.
The keys to the match against Kell are pretty simple.
“We need to dominate the draw, use our speed to be the offensive threat we’ve been all year and continue to rely on our defense to come up big on turn overs and denying drives – the things they do best,” Morgan added.
Both Senft and Morgan are excited to be part of this historic year.
“FCS is a special place and the families have welcomed us and supported us,” Senft said. “The way we’ve chosen to do things has worked for this team. We get a great deal of support from AD [David] Lowery. It’s his belief in us as leaders, and the girls as great young women and athletes, that has really allowed us to be the best coaches we can be here.”
The Lady Paladins have scored 237 goals this season, led by junior Shelby Stock with 53. Stock also tops the club with 93 shots.
Senior Haley Herrman ranks second on the team with 42 goals, and freshman Brooke Beard is next with 40. Freshman Lexi Menna and junior Camille Stroud each have netted 26 goals.
Senior Meredith Moore leads Fellowship with 59 ground balls and 36 takeaways. Sophomore goalkeeper Cary Guthrie tops the team with 80 saves Senior Camille Davenport has registered 43 saves.
Playoff Run Ends: Paladins Battle Hard in 2-1 Loss to Athens Academy in Elite Eight Match
After the Fellowship Christian School varsity boys soccer team tied the game in the second half, you could sense the playoff match might come down to one play.
Unfortunately for the Paladin faithful in the stands in Athens, the home Athens Academy club made that play.
With 3:29 to go, the Spartans scored on a PK following a penalty in the box to take a 2-1 lead. Athens Academy, 16-3 overall, went on to win the hard-fought Elite Eight contest, 2-1, and keep FCS from advancing to the Final Four of the GHSA Class A Soccer Championships for the third time.
The Paladins gave it all they had on the field in the school’s fifth trip to the Elite Eight over the six seasons. The club, which finished 2018 with a 10-6 mark, reached the Elite Eight last year, the state title game in 2016, the Final Four in 2015, the Sweet 16 in 2014 and the Elite Eight in 2013.
After the game ended, the Paladins showed their sportsmanship by sharing sports drinks with the Spartan players. Head coach Andy Trevers led both teams in a post-game prayer.
Seniors Casey Barham, Jack Berends, Teddy Keim, Merrick Haigler, Paul McCranie and James Milhollin all played their last games as Paladin athletes.
Barham tied the contest with a goal into the right corner of the Spartan net 3:05 into the second half. His last-second shot sailed just slightly over the crossbar.
The Paladins drove hard to the net a few times in the second half, nearly taking the lead twice. Freshman Will Peterson’s shot sailed just a little bit over the net at 25:50, about four minutes after Barham’s shot trickled a little bit wide of the net.
Athens Academy led 1-0 at halftime on goal scored 31 seconds into the game.
Junior goalkeeper Noah Dryden made several big stops in the contest.
(Photo by Martha Heid)
Disappointment: Paladins Season Ends with Playoff Loss at HIES
The Fellowship Christian School varsity boys baseball team’s stellar season has come to an end.
The Paladins dropped a pair of 4-2 decisions in the second-round, best-of-three GHSA Class A Private Championships series at Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School in Sandy Springs on May 3.
It was the Paladins’ third trip to the state tourney since 2009.
The Paladins (21-12) closed the year with wins in five out of its last eight games.
In game two, junior Isaac Bouton belted out three hits – all doubles – and drove in a run.
Junior Cameron Gill collected two hits, including a double, and drove in a run. Gill and Bouton combined for five of FCS’ seven hits.
Gill and senior David Franco scored the Fellowship runs in the contest.
Sophomore Preston Joye smacked a double and freshman Garrett Hauenstein added a single in the contest for FCS, which had a run in the fourth and another in the bottom of the seventh. The Bears scored two runs in the top of the third, and one in each of the fourth and sixth innings.
Bouton surrendered three runs over four innings as the starter and took the loss. Senior Hunter McMickle threw one inning, and senior Nolan Lavergne allowed one run in two innings of work.