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Norman nabs third at golf championship

Fort Dale's Cam Norman claimed third place at the Alabama Independent School Association State Golf Championship held at the Troy Country Club. (Advocate Photo/Ashley Vansant)

Fort Dale’s Cam Norman fired an 11-over-par 153 to finish tied for third at the Alabama Independent School Association State Golf Championship.

Norman’s performance helped lead the Eagles to a fifth-place finish in the two-day tournament, which was held at the Troy Country Club and ended Tuesday. Fort Dale posted a score of 688 to finish 68 strokes back of tournament champion Pike Liberal Arts.

“I felt pretty good going into the tournament,” Norman said. “The day before the tournament started I played at (the Greenville Country Club) and shot a 67, which tied the lowest score I’ve ever shot, so I felt good about the way I was playing.”

Norman was pleased with his finish given his struggles with the putter.

“The first day I hit the ball well, but I couldn’t putt,” Norman said. “I really putted the ball badly. The second day was even worse. That was really the difference in the tournament.”

Norman, who was named to the AISA All-State team, shot a first round 74 and closed the tournament with a 79.

“Cam has really been our leader all year,” Fort Dale headmaster David Brantley said. “He had a chance to win it. He was in second going into (the final round), but he had some bad luck and struggled some, but he still managed to shoot 79 and finished tied for third.”

McKinley Lee also earned a top-20 finish for the Eagles. Lee posted a two-day total of 168 to finish tied for 15th.

Patrick Russell  (171) finished tied for 24th, while John Coleman Poole (196) and Luke Hamm (197) finished 57th and tied for 58th, respectively.

Taylor Loftin, the team’s lone senior, finished in 60th place after recording a two-day total of 200.

“All of these guys showed improvement throughout the year,” Brantley said. “They all worked hard and I was really proud of their effort. It was really a pleasure for me to be associated with them this season. Taylor was our only senior, so the rest of these guys will be coming back and we should have a pretty good team again next year.”

Norman said he and the Eagles gained confidence from their performance at the championship and he believes the squad could make a run at the title next season.

“If all of us continue to improve I think we could have a good chance to win the state championship,” he said.