Golf team

The Halifax County High School golf team finished second in Tuesday’s Virginia High School League Class 5 Region D Golf Tournament at Roanoke Country Club and qualified to compete in the VHSL Class 5 state tournament starting Monday. Comets golfers from the left are Will Abdi, Henry Morrison, Jacob Day, Ryan Corona, Willoughby Gasperini and Nick Carter. Gasperini earned First Team all-region honors, and Abdi earned Second Team all-region honors.

For the third year in a row the Halifax County High School will play in the Virginia High School League Class 5 State Golf Tournament.

The Comets qualified for Monday’s state tournament at Magnolia Green Country Club near Richmond with a second-place finish in Tuesday’s VHSL Region 5D Tournament at Roanoke Country Club.

“We are very glad to represent Halifax County again in the state tournament,” said Comets Head Coach David Graham.

“This group has worked hard, and that hard worked has paid off in another trip to the Class 5 State Tournament. Our team goal at the beginning of the year was to return to state tournament, and the team accomplished that in the regional tournament.”

“All of the players worked very hard during the practice rounds,” added Graham, “and were very encouraging to each other during the tournament. Super parent support helped us as well.”

Albemarle High School won the region tournament with a 321 total, with Halifax County High School following with a 345 total.

Along with qualifying for the state tournament, two Comets golfers, Willoughby Gasperini and Will Abdi, earned all-region honors. Gasperini led the Comets with a round of 81, finished fourth overall in the individual standings and earned First Team all-region honors. Abdi carded a round of 83, finished in a tie for seventh-place, and he earned Second Team all-region honors.

Other counting scores for the Comets were an 88 from Henry Morrison and a 93 from Nick Carter.

“Henry Morrison has played steady all year,” Graham pointed out, “and he came through finishing strong. Nick Carter capped it off with a 93, which was big for us, because it put us past Massaponax for second place.”

Jacob Day and Ryan Corona also competed for the Comets, with both carding a round of 99. Their scores were not counted toward the team total as the four best scores from among six designated players are counted.

The Comets and Massaponax had a close battle, with the Comets edging Massaponax by three strokes to advance to the state tournament.

“All of our players fought to the end, giving it all they had,” Graham said.

“We knew that second place spot was going to be close as Coach Day (Assistant Coach David Day) and I kept our players updated.”

The eight-team field for Monday’s state tournament has now been set. Deep Run High School of Glen Allen, which has won three straight state championships and four in the last five years, returns having won the Region B title handily over Douglas Freeman High School of Henrico, which also advanced.

Hickory High School of Chesapeake, last year’s state runner-up, returns as the Region A champion, with Salem High School of Virginia Beach advancing as the region runner-up.

Rock Ridge High School of Ashburn won the Region C championship, and Potomac Falls advances out of that region as well as the runner-up.


(At Roanoke Country Club – Par 72)

• Albemarle 321— Jack Bruns 76, Dexter McKean 79, Jack Kelly 82, Cooper Ezell 84, Robert Brozey 86, Mia Liang 88.

• Halifax County 345 — Willoughby Gasperini 81, Will Abdi 83, Henry Morrison 88, Nick Carter 93, Jacob Day 99, Ryan Corona 100,

• Massaponax 348 — y-Noah LaFleur 79, Mike Wallace 87, Will Kujawa 90, Zach Cruz 92, Kelvin Raibon 95, Brooke Vaillancourt 105.

• Mountain View 369 — y-Andrew Watson 82, Gabby Cuellar 87, Aiven Thomas 94, Grayson Margheim 104, Tucker Tidwell 106, Ryan Hall 112.

• Individual players — yz-Jane Thompson, Harrisonburg 76, Jacob Pfeiffer (North Stafford) 83, Ben Harding (Stafford) 86, John Stockstill (Patrick Henry) 89, Drew Harding (Stafford) 91, Walker Thompson (Harrisonburg) 96, Lexie Gaston (North Stafford) 97, Regina Badami (North Stafford) 97, Ben Collier (Patrick Henry) 97, Michael Hatfield (Brooke Point) 98, Justin Craig (William Fleming) 99, Evan Gross (Patrick Henry) WD.

• Note - y-individual qualifier for Class 5 state tournament. z-won playoff.

Joe Chandler is the sports editor for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact him at

Joe Chandler is the sports editor for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact him at