Miller earns AA silver again
BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS Northwestern's Cole Miller finished winning the silver medal at the PIAA Championships for the second year in a row.
YORK - It was like watching Tiger Woods vs. Phil Mickelson.
Northwestern's Cole Miller is a righty. Fairfield's Isaiah Logue is a lefty.
It could have also been billed Ali vs. Frazier.
Logue won the gold medal and Miller the silver at the 2012 PIAA Golf Championships.
This year, the two seniors took the same course to be grouped in the final Class AA foursome vying for yet the gold one more time.
Just as he did last year, Miller held a one stroke lead entering the final 18 holes. And with quite a gallery, the two stepped up to the 18th tee tied at 2-under par through 35 holes.
Logue on the 471-yard par four hole put his tee shot within 150 yards of the green right in the fairway. He proceed to put his second shot within 10 feet of the pin and calmly drained it for a birdie and finished the tournament at 3-under. Miller bogeyed the hole to finish the tournament at 1-under. The duo were the only two golfers in both 2A and 3A to finish under par.
"It was an up and down round today," Miller said afterwards. "I got off to a hot start again and then kind of faded towards the middle of the round, towards holes eight and nine. I went double bogey and bogey so that was a tough way to end the front nine and it put me at two over for that nine.
"I played well and fought back and got it to even par going into the last and then he (Isaiah) dropped one for birdie and that pretty much did it."
Miller birdied the first two holes, then bogeyed the third before bouncing back with a birdie on four. Double bogeys on the par three 5 and 8 holes gave Logue the lead.
Miller almost drove the green on the par four No. 10, while Logue found a fairway bunker in what turned into a double bogey six for him. Miller, meanwhile got par and the two were tied again.
Logue bounced back into the lead by one stroke when he birdied 11 and then after both made par on No. 12, Miller birdied 13 to pull even again. Miller birdied the par three 15th hole to take a once stroke lead, but Logue never waivered and birdied the 16th hole to tie it up again. both wound up with par on 17 to set the stage for the exciting 18th hole finish.
"When you get Cole's amount of ability and his experience playing against better competition a lot of good things happen," said Northwestern golf coach Tim Miller. "Hats off to Isaiah, he made birdie on the 18th hole to win the state championship. The game's cruel in that way that you only have control over what you can do and you have no control over anybody else.
"For any of the spectators who were out here, you saw what's good about the game of golf. Four young men that respected one another and played hard and the best man won today.
"I feel so blessed being around Cole the last couple of years. Golf is just the icing on the cake. He's just a tremendous young man."
Miller ends a fantastic career that saw him win make the PIAA Championships for the third straight year, this year's PIAA East Regional event, two District 11 titles, three straight Colonial League championships and two straight Lehigh Valley Player of the Year Awards.
Notre Dame of East Stroudsburg's Ryan Krechel shot rounds of 83 and 76 to finish tied for 13th, Central Catholic's Erik Ridley finished with an 81 and 84 in 28th place and Moravian Academy's Tim Wolak fired rounds of 86 and 91 to tie for 33rd.
In 3A boys, Upper St. Clair's Grant Engle won the gold shooting five-over par. Northampton's Kevin Kunkle shot rounds of 80 both days to tie for 22nd and Emmaus' Grant Schumaker shot a 79 and 82 to tie for 24th.
In 3A girls, Isabella Dilisio of Mount Saint Joseph fired rounds of 75 and 73 to win the gold. Freedom's Helen Hsu was 16th with rounds of 86 and 91.
Mackey Fouse of Central Valley had a 75 and 77 to win 2A girls gold.