And it continued to brew as Itawamba gathered on River Birch Golf Club’s 18th green holding its Class 4A state championship trophy after a 625-627 win against New Albany in the MHSAA Class 4A state golf tournament.
It is the Indians’ second championship in three years.
Boggs’ score of 6 on the day’s final hole was questioned by New Albany players and their coach, Robert Garrett. Garrett said Boggs whiffed on a swing and it should have been recorded as a 7 on the scorecard. Boggs, who was playing his ball in the brush, said it was a practice swing.
The card had already been signed by a fellow golfer and one tournament official said New Albany didn’t let the tournament committee know of the miscue in time – an assertion which Garrett contradicted in an interview later Wednesday.
If the tournament committee had accepted the protest, Boggs would have been disqualified and New Albany would have been declared the winner.
“After the scorecard was turned in, there was a discrepancy brought up,” Itawamba coach Michael Nanney said. “The tournament committee met and decided the score turned in was the correct score.
“Our kids battled all day. The kids just came through and did a great job. They all did.”
The Indians, in their first season under Nanney, had to battle from 10 strokes behind after New Albany shot a 303 on Tuesday’s opening 18 holes.
By comparison, the Bulldogs struggled on Wednesday – opening the door for Itawamba to challenge for the title.
Chad Ramey’s 74 was just enough to earn him the overall medal with a two-day 143, one stroke better than West Jones’ J.T. Soley.
West Jones finished third after improving 12 strokes from Tuesday and finishing with a 650.
New Albany was 21 strokes off its Day 1 total. Tucker Holmes shot a 75 to lead the team on Wednesday.
For Itawamba, Boggs shot a 77, Chaney Kennedy shot a 79, Ally McDonald an 82 and John Felix Robertson and 84.
Garrett pleaded his case with rulebook in hand to officials. He said the school plans to appeal to the Mississippi High School Activities Association.
“The rules of golf say if you sign for a lower score card, you’re DQ’d. They gave him the lower score, so they won,” Garrett said. “We’re absolutely going to appeal. The rules of golf are written. I feel sorry for my guys. We’re going to appeal it. There’s nothing else we can do.”
Boggs’ 77 improved his Tuesday score by three strokes.
“They thought I whiffed the ball,” Boggs said of the disputed stroke on the last hole. “I know I took a practice swing and I knew what the truth was, so I stood my ground. The committee discussed it and decided to approve it.”
Ramey opened play with a 3-under 69 and followed that with Wednesday’s 74 to finish as the only golfer under par for the tournament.
“I hit it really bad today,” Ramey said, “not just terrible. I hit my driver really bad and I didn’t putt good at all. I hit my irons and wedges fair.”