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Wolfpack, Griffith get the Early Bird

April 15, 2009
After a disappointing match against Floyd Central and Lanesville at Valley View Golf Course, the Crawford County Wolfpack bounced back two days later to win the Early Bird Invitational Saturday morning at the Old English Golf Course. Crawford senior Ryan Griffith also won individually after having to go an extra playoff hole against Forest Park's Bryce Nord.

Crawford County senior Ryan Griffith watches this eight-foot putt roll into the hole to give him the playoff and championship win of the Early Bird Invitational at Old English Golf Course. Photo by Wade Bell
"After the way we played Thursday night at Valley View, then having our No. 2 go down in Jarett Denzinger, I was very pleased to shoot 165," Crawford coach Jeff (Pete) Crecelius said. "I told the kids that I thought 160 would win and in the back of my mind thinking 170 would win. Shooting 165, I was ecstatic."

The course had a mixture of conditions after the week's rains, as some places dried out quickly to become firm while others remained soft and soggy.

"The tees, the footing was pretty hard," Griffith said. "When you got in the fairways, everything was just wet. You tried to find the best lie you could and make the best you can get. It was pretty hard to pick your irons. You had to think about hitting them fat."

"It played long, but they've got the greens where I would like to see them," Crecelius said. "They're a little firmer and a little faster. It played into our advantage playing here."

Crawford's top four played steady all day. Griffith finished with a 38, while Tyler Wyman clocked in with a 39 for the nine holes. Austin Key finished at 43, and Andrew Curl came in with a 45 for the 165 total.

"Austin had a steady round," Crecelius said. "Austin has probably been our steadiest player all year. It seems like he's always around 42. He had a lot of bogies, but he played steady.

"Tyler Wyman, after Thursday when we played at Valley View, Tyler had a big number and came back and shot an excellent 39. Ryan Griffith is our only senior and Ryan did exactly what we thought he would do. I'm very pleased for him after losing (at Valley View)."

On the playoff hole on No. 1, Griffith and Nord both put their tee shots in the fairway. It was the second shot where Nord got into trouble as the ball drilled its way into the west end of the long water hazard. Nord's penalty shot went across the water but was still well short of the green. His next shot landed on the green but some 30 feet from the hole.

"I was trying to hit it left into the fairway, and then my three wood just came around too quick," Nord said. "Then, I hit it right and I hit into the water."

Griffith's second shot stayed on the fairway but was short. The senior's third shot went well right, leaving a long chipper. That chip shot put the ball about eight feet from the hole. Nord's putt went to the left. Griffith stroked the eight-footer into the hole for the win.

"It was about the ugliest par I've made in my life," Griffith said with a laugh. "I hit a good tee shot then three bad shots in between. Then, I made a good putt. I knew it was going to be close, and I knew I had to just two-putt to win. I just wanted to get it down there close so I could tap it in for the win."

"Ryan's played enough golf that he understands that you don't get too up and you don't get too down," Crecelius said. "He was calm and just made an easy par out of it."

Nord said he felt good about his day despite having to settle for second place.

"I feel pretty good because I was only two over par, but just couldn't get the medalist," he said. "But that's all right."

Griffith said it was a good day for his team after the ugly day the Wolfpack had on Thursday.

"It was a wake-up call for our young guys and everybody else," he said. "We knew we needed to step up with that loss. We struggled. Everybody came out today and played a lot better. I was glad to defend our home turf."

"I expect them to improve," Crecelius said of his team. "Our five, six and seven slots, we had kids on our JV that played very well today. That fifth spot is going to be up for grabs. It's a good problem to have. I see us progressing along. I still think we'll be a contender for the conference, and I'll be disappointed if we're not a contender for the sectional this year."

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Crawford County Varsity - 165

(Griffith 38, Wyman 39, Key 43, Curl 45)

Springs Valley - 173

(Meehan 41, T. Harner 41, Mills 43, L. Harner 48)

Springs Valley JV - 187

(Galloway 41, Deel 44, Orr 47, Woosley 55, Ragains 55)

Forest Park - 191

(Nord 38, Englert 48, Grundhoefer 50, Staff 55)

Lanesville - 193

(Glomb 46, Engle 47, Wright 50, Murray 50)

Perry Central - 194

(Graves 46, Weatherholt 47, Douglas 47, Flamion 54)

Crawford County Brown - 202

(Riddell 46, Ransdall 47, Ingle 51, Colin 58)

Tell City - 202

(Schutaies 46, Cole 47, Bolin 53, Young 56, Roland 56)

Northeast Dubois 222

(Schroering 45, Spooner 59, Seifert 59, Kluesner 59)

South Central - 253

(Parish 56, Purdue 64, Soots 66, LeClair 67)

Christian Academy - Inc.

(Wilder 42, Clark 46, Earl 49)

Medalist - Ryan Griffith (CC) 38*

2nd - Bryce Nord (FP) 38

3rd - Tyler Wyman (CC) 39

* Winner by Playoff

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