HANCEVILLE - Wallace State Community College golf coach Dan York felt his team was on the verge of big achievements at the conclusion of the spring season.
The team has already proved him right this fall. Wallace State capped off a team championship this week at the Jim Redgate Invitational at Briarwood Country Club in Meridian, Miss.
Wallace State shot an overall 875 in the three-day, par-72 course to knock off second-ranked Central Alabama Community College by two strokes (13-over par 878) and top-ranked Meridian Mississippi Community College by four strokes (879).
"It was an awesome win for our team. We're off to a good start, and I'm proud of them. They're all playing well," said York, whose team finished ninth during the national tournament during the spring season. "To have that strong of a field participating and to win a tournament on someone else's golf course is real special."
Wallace State opened the tournament with a team-low 289 during the first round and followed it with a pair of 293s over the next two rounds.
Wallace State had a pair of individuals tie for second-low medalist. Blaise Wilson, a Cullman High graduate, and Jimmy Lloyd both finished at 1-under par 215.
Wilson shot a 70, 72, and 73 in succession and Lloyd finished with a pair of 72's and a 71 in his final round.
The Jim Redgate Invitational has become a course favorite for Wilson considering he was the low medalist last fall in the same tournament, shooting a 5-under 208 to claim the individual championship.
"Blaise Wilson is turning things around after struggling for a while. He plays well on that course, and we continue to expect good things out of Blaise during his sophomore year," York said. "Jimmy Lloyd is a guy who has learned a lot from the sophomores who played at the national tournament during May. Jimmy played as well as you can for a freshman."
Wallace State's Deane Rikard, a Brooks grad, finish tied for seventh with a 3-over 219.
Andrew Lowry and Mark Hudgins also played for the Lions, both finishing tied for 28th.
Wilson, Rikard, Lowry and Hudgins represent the four sophomores on the Wallace State roster.
"Our sophomores are setting a good example for the freshmen. Their example and experience is starting to pay off a bit," said York, a NJCAA Hall of Fame member. "Their play in this tournament was big for the fact we have a tough district with Central Alabama, Faulkner State, Meridian and with Darton Community College joining us from Georgia. Darton used to be a NJCAA Division II school who has won three national championships. They're going to make our district even tougher."
Central Alabama's Paul Harris was the tournament's low medalist after shooting an 8-under 208.
Wallace State resumes its fall schedule on Nov. 1-2 at the NJCAA District IV Championship Preview at Alex City.
For more information about Wallace State athletics, visit wallacestate.edu.