The Walters State Community College men’s golf team is taking on a distinctly Campbell County flavor these days.
With the addition of CCHS seniors Cory Martin and Bryce Roach, who signed last week, nearly half the 2012-13 Senators’ squad calls Campbell County home. Cody Byrge of Jellico and Matthew Chambers of Jacksboro are already members of the WSCC team.
Martin and Roach first attracted the attention of Walters State’s hall of fame coach Bill Gardner in August 2011, when they led their high school to its first Morristown Invitational Tournament championship. Martin placed 3rd overall with a score of 76, while Roach shot 78 to finish 6th.
“They had a strong team,” Gardner said.
“What impressed me about them is that they’re good academically, they’re good athletes and they come from good families. They also had a good coach. With that combination, it’s easier to become successful.
“We’re tickled to death that they’re coming (to WSCC).”
Martin, who has a 3.5 grade point average, may pursue a degree in the medical field.
“I want to go to a bigger school, so I’m hoping this is a stepping stone,” Martin said.
Roach, who boasts a 3.98 grade point average, also hopes to continue his golf career at a 4-year institution once he completes his two years at Walters State. He is undecided on a major.
“I’ve been playing golf ever since I could walk,” Roach said.
“I want to end up at a Division I school. The more tournament experience I get, the more I can get my name out there to be noticed by bigger colleges.”
Martin and Roach are certainly going to a program in which they can realize their dreams. Walters State has won 15 state and regional golf titles, qualified for the national junior college tournament 14 times, and produced a national champion.