Chapel Hill High’s Gina Kim played her first round of high school golf last week and the results were as advertised.
Kim, 14, a freshman who is ranked among the top junior players in the country, shot a 3-under-par 32 on the front nine at Wildwood Green in Creedmoor.
“By far, the most talented and driven player I’ve had the pleasure to coach during eight years at CHHS,” said coach Jim Williams.
Kim finished three strokes ahead of runners-up Sarah Towne of East Chapel Hill and Hailey Freedman of Cardinal Gibbons, both at even-par 35.
Kim is the No. 1-ranked female among North Carolina junior golfers. She’s ranked No. 84 among all juniors nationally and No. 4 in the U.S. class of 2018.
“I like the competition,” Kim told the Chapel Hill News after her first high school match. “The pressure to do well motivates me to work harder.”
The Warriors were 24-7 last year, but are expected to field a new starting five, all juniors.
The program has 7-foot Raekwon Long and 6-10, 300-pound Iran Bennett (both from Charlotte), 6-7 Thaddeus Middleton (Charleston, S.C.), 6-3 point Treante Mason (Jacksonville, Fla.) and 6-4 Aaron Simon (Louisburg). New York native 6-foot D.J. Armstrong is the only senior and only letter winner.
Northern Durham coach Michael Tetreault said Knights keeper Francisco Guerrero made two tremendous saves to preserve the shutout.
His overall boys’ record is 300-143-20.
“This hasn’t been about me. We’ve had some good boys work hard,” he said.
Pilkington said coaching in Harnett County has changed during his 20-plus years.
“We used to have some players who were new to soccer or who were not really involved in club soccer,” he said. “I remember creating my own club team and carrying it to Raleigh to play just to give the kids some experience playing.”
He said the skill level has greatly improved.