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Players to Watch at the North State High School Challenge

Defending champion team Cannon School of Concord, N.C.

 

SOUTHERN PINES, N.C. (March 16, 2016) -- The North State High School Challenge will return to The Club at Irish Creek on March 18-19, 2016. The event will be a 36-hole stroke play tournament for public and private high schools from the state of North Carolina. The Cannon School from Concord, NC will look to defend their title after coming from behind to win the 3rd North State High School Challenge.

An anticipated field of 18 teams (90 junior golfers) will compete on the Davis Love redesigned course that opened for play in 2007 and has hosted numerous Carolinas Golf Association and USGA qualifying tournaments.

Teams to watch:

  1. Cannon School of Concord, N.C., is defending champion at this week’s North State High School Challenge. They are also the defending 3A N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association state champion.
  2. Pinecrest HS of Pinehurst, N.C., is the defending North Carolina High School Athletic Association State 4A champion. Pinecrest returns four of the five starters from the state championship team including 4A individual champion Eric Bae.
  3. Myers Park HS of Charlotte, N.C., has finished in the top three at the NCHSAA 4A Championship for five straight years. With Henry Shimp, Walker Simas, and Will Simmons leading the way, Myers Park looks to contend once again this year. 

Players to Watch:

  1. Nicholas Lyerly of Salisbury, N.C., a junior at East Rowan HS, was the 2015 NC Junior Player of the Year by the TYGA. In 2015, Lyerly won seven times including the NCHSAA 3A Championship, the High Point Junior Open, the Rowan Junior Open, the Palmetto High School Championship, the TYGA State Championship, the NCJGF Irish Creek tournament and tied for first in the NC Trusted Choice Big I Junior Championship. Lyerly is currently ranked #1 in the NC junior boy’s rankings.
  2. Blake Taylor of Atkinson, N.C, a senior at Wilmington Christian, recently won the Dustin Johnson World Junior Golf Championship in Myrtle Beach, S.C. In 2015 Taylor won four times including the George Holliday Junior, Roy Jones Invitational, TYGA Coastal Plains, and the CPGA Junior Boys Championship. Taylor is currently ranked #3 in the NC junior boy’s rankings.
  3. Henry Shimp of Charlotte, N.C., a senior at Myers Park HS, won the 2015 Carolinas Junior Boys Championship and finished tied for sixth in the 2015 Carolinas Amateur. Shimp is currently ranked 4th in the NC junior boy’s rankings and will play collegiately at Stanford University next year.
  4. Eric Bae of Pinehurst, N.C., a senior at Pinecrest HS, recently won the Keith Hills HS Kickoff and Carolinas-Georgia Junior. In 2015 Bae won the NC 4A State Championship, Jimmy Creed Junior Boys’ Invitational and qualified for match play in the U.S. Junior Amateur. Bae is currently ranked #5 in the NC junior boy’s rankings and will play collegiately at Wake Forest University next year.
  5. Christian Park of Charlotte, N.C., a senior at Providence HS, had eight top ten finishes in 2015 including a win at the Metro Junior Championship. Park is currently ranked #6 in the NC junior boy’s rankings.
  6. Walker Simas of Charlotte, N.C., a senior at Myers Park HS, won the 2015 Webb Simpson Challenge and PGA Junior Series event at Columbia CC. Simas also finished 2nd at the Jimmy Creed Boys Invitational. Simas is currently ranked #7 in the NC junior boy’s rankings and will play collegiately at Wofford College next year.
  7. Michael Sanders of Davidson, N.C., a sophomore at Cannon School, won the 2015 AJGA IZOD Championship, and finished third at the NCISAA 3A Championship. Sanders is currently ranked #8 in the NC junior boy’s rankings.
  8. A.J. Beechler of Pinehurst, N.C., a sophomore at Pinecrest HS, had ten top ten finishes in 2015 including top five finishes at the Jimmy Anderson Boys Invitational and the Carolinas Junior Boys Championship. Beechler is currently ranked #10 in the NC junior boy’s rankings.
  9. Michael Freeman of Asheville, N.C., a senior at Christ School, had seven top ten finishes in 2015 including top five finishes at the CGA Dogwood Junior, Tom Fazio Junior Masters, NC Junior Boys Championship and US Jr. Qualifier. Freeman is currently ranked #11 in the NC junior boy’s rankings and will play collegiately at Davidson College next year.
  10. Walker Cress of Concord, N.C., a senior at Concord HS, is coming into the North State High School Challenge with four straight top ten finishes including a victory at the Irish Creek HS Invitational. Cress is currently ranked #16 in the NC junior boy’s rankings and will play collegiately at James Madison University.

TYGA will post any tournament delays or cancellations via our Twitter account. Follow @tygagolf.

About the Tarheel Youth Golf Association (TYGA)

The Tarheel Youth Golf Association (TYGA), a division of the Carolinas Golf Association, a 501 (c) 3 organization, provides playing opportunities for its members, conducts educational seminars and events, acts as a junior golf informational clearinghouse, provides free USGA handicaps to junior golfers in North Carolina, recruits sponsor clubs that grant junior access to golf facilities in North Carolina, publishes monthly North Carolina junior rankings, and awards Junior Player of the Year and All-State awards to the top juniors in North Carolina.  Membership is open to any boy or girl who are legal residents of N.C; are 18 years of age and under; and who have not started college. 

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