Pigskin Classic scores with coaches

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 16, 2004

A steady drizzle didn't prevent Rehab Associates of Greenville from holding its inaugural golf tournament Monday afternoon.

More than 40 coaches, athletic trainers, physical therapists and doctors competed in the Pigskin Classic held at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at Cambrian Ridge to show appreciation to the athletic programs in the area.

"Rehab Associates decided to have this tournament to show the coaches that I take care of how much we appreciate them helping us and letting us into their schools to help their athletes and student body," Sports Medicine Director for Rehab Associates of Greenville Jason Peavy said. "Also, it helps us get a feel for the community here in Butler County and show how dedicated we are to servicing not only sports medicine wise, but physical therapy in general."

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Most golfers would agree that at times it gets very hot on the golf course. So an overcast sky and a light mist were embraced by much of the field. The clouds kept the sun away and the rain kept it nice and cool.

"I'm very thankful the heavy rain held off," Peavy said. "When I woke up this morning (Monday) it was overcast and drizzling and I really thought it was going to be a pretty bad day. It drizzled on us, but allninnall I think it was a really good day. It was comfortable out there and I think all the coaches enjoyed it. It was between 80 and 85 degrees with a little mist in your face. It was perfect."

Fort Dale Academy Head Football Coach James "Speed" Sampley said he is grateful of Rehab Associates for holding the golf tournament and is one of many who welcomed the rain.

"We really appreciate Rehab Associates for doing that for us and everything else they do. There's no way a school our size could afford to have a trainer on staff and they provide one for the Butler County area and it's a great service. It was nice to fellowship, get together and play golf with the other coaches in the area. It rained a little bit, but it was cool and at this time we'll take cool any way we can get it."

The foursome comprised of Arlton Hudson, David Godwin, Phillip Harold and Duane Salter representing HillcrestnEvergreen High School captured first place in the tournament.

The Greenville High School team made up of Head Football Coach Alvin Briggs, David Hartman, Andrew Hartman and Ward Thigpen placed second. The Fort Dale Academy team including Steven Sorrells, Head Basketball Coach Reggie Mantooth, Head Master David Brantley and former Eagle Baseball standout and Auburn University Montgomery pitcher Marshall Watts came in third.

"The turnout was great," Peavy said. "We had 45 people sign up to play and 41 showed. Every school that I take care of was represented. Greenville and Fort Dale Academy had two teams and Georgiana, McKenzie, Luverne and HillcrestnEvergreen each had a team. Shane Smothers, the former McKenzie head football coach, came up from W.S. Neal to play in the event."

Watts proved he could hit the long ball winning both longest drive competitions. He out drove the field on Sherling No. 1 and Canyon No. 7.

Andrew Hartman won the closest to the pin contest on Canyon No. 2 and Smothers put his ball the closest on Sherling No. 2.

Jackson Hospital of Montgomery also helped out with the tournament providing prizes for the golfers on hand. Sports Medicine Director Charles Lee supported Peavy and his tournament.

"Jason has done an excellent job directing the sports medicine program in Butler County," Lee said. "I supported him in this tournament just because he has been so dedicated and I appreciate the hard work he has done for Jackson Hospital and Rehab Associates. He has done a wonderful job and hopefully there are better things to come."

Area businesses also came through helping out with door prizes and goody bags.

"Many of the local companies in Greenville, Georgiana and McKenzie also provided door prizes and gifts for the tournament," Peavy said. "The staff at Cambrian Ridge did an excellent job with setting the venue for the tournament. Danny Foster and Bryan Reynolds helped me out a great deal. They pretty much did everything. I just found the players. It's just unbelievable how easy it was to have a tournament here at Cambrian Ridge."

Peavy hopes by hosting the tournament the coaches in the area will realize how devoted Rehab Associates and he are to the schools and athletes in the trincounty. The tournament was Peavy's way of thanking them for their cooperation and time.

"I hope the coaches see how dedicated I am to providing them with not only sports medicine services, but also to reward them and thank them by doing an activity like this," he said. "Everybody that I talked to throughout the day complimented on how good a time they had and how much they appreciated us doing this for them."

Peavy said Rehab Associates plans to make the tournament an annual event, but already has some changes in store.

"I think we're going to try to do it again next year about this time," he said. "We might change the timing up a little bit, so it will be more of a morning thing than it is midnday just because it works out a little bit better for some of the coaches that are having offnseason workouts."