Ballard wins playoff to earn trip to state 2A golf tournament

Polk County’s Will Ballard earned a berth in the state 2A golf championship, firing a 76 and then winning a playoff for the final qualifying berth at Tuesday’s 2A West Regional at Catawba Country Club in Newton.

Ballard finished in a tie for third with R-S Central’s Hewett Nichols, four shots behind top qualifier Logan Warren of Cramer and two shots behind Ben James of East Lincoln, for the final individual state qualifying slot. That forced a playoff, which Ballard won on the first hole to advance to next week’s state championship meet at Longleaf Golf and Country Club in Southern Pines.

Newton-Conover had a team score of 309 to win the regional title. Shelby followed with a 317 and Lincolnton a 318 to claim the team qualifying positions.

Polk County had a team score of 350 to finish ninth.

Polk County individual scores were: Ballard 76, Jaron Bontrager 83, Zane Capozzi 92, RJ Weathers 99, Daniel Weathers 103, Tanner Garrett 105