RALEIGH — Defending N.C. High School Athletic Association Class 4A state champion Broughton captured the Mideast regional title Tuesday as all six Caps golfers scored in the 70s on the par-71 course at Raleigh Country Club.
They finished with a team score of 296, 14 strokes ahead of second place Durham Riverside (310) and 21 ahead of Cap Eight rival Leesville Road (317).
All three teams will go on to compete in the 4A state tournament next week at Pinehurst.
“We’re excited,” Broughton coach Anderson Marlowe said. “A chance to defend your title is special, and golf is a tough sport to do it in.”
Stephen Saleeby, who won the individual state title last year, shot 74. His Broughton teammates Will Minton and Harrison Rhoades each shot 73 to lead the Caps.
“Our three goals this year were to win conference, regionals and states, so we have two of three now,” said Court Settle, who shot 77.
Preyer Fountain and Kirkland Caison rounded out the group shooting 76 and 78, respectively.
The Caps eked out a conference title over Leesville Road during the regular season. Having to battle for the Cap Eight title gave the defending champs a reality check midway through the regular season, Rhoades said.
Saleeby said the regional title is a “good momentum boost,” as they head back to Pinehurst.
Cap Eight runner-up Leesville Road edged East Chapel Hill, which also finished with a team score of 317, in a scorecard playoff for the final team spot.
The scorecard playoff came down to the sixth golfer on each team, which Leesville won by four strokes.
Leesville coach Andrew Wilkinson said the team’s regional performance did not meet expectations, but Carter Jenkins, who helped lead the team to a 2011 NCHSAA 4A title was still optimistic heading into the state tournament.
“It’s a new day,” said Jenkins, who missed last year’s state tournament with a broken wrist. “Just because you finished third here, who says you can’t finish first at states?”
Jenkins, Jake Hutchinson and Will Franzen all shot 78 for the Pride.
East Chapel Hill will send junior Ben Griffin, who shot a regional tournament low 69, to the state tournament as an individual competitor. He will be joined by Wake Forest-Rolesville junior Neville Burton (70) and Apex senior Zach Smith (74) as Mideast individual qualifiers.
Smith topped fellow Tri-Nine golfer Tim Conover in a three-hole playoff for the final spot.
“This is my first year being able to go states and it’s my senior year, so it was my last chance,” Smith said. “Tim is one of my good friends and we compete in a lot of Tri-Nine matches, but it’s exciting to represent our conference (at states).”
Wake Forest-Rolesville’s Burton said he set goals to earn a top five finish in states and win the regional title. He came up one stroke shy of the regional title, but still has his eyes set on a top finish next week.
Griffin, who won the state title as a freshman, said his goal is to win another.
Though he wanted his team to make the cut, he came alive in the back nine to cruise to an individual best. After shooting one over par on the front nine before taking birdies on holes 10, 11, 12 and 13 to best Burton for the individual crown.
Newt Barringer led Riverside’s second-place team finish with a 75. Alex Brese shot 76 for Riverside.