The Athens Review
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the only state team title to come from Mabank as the golf team from 1988 won with four seniors and one freshman.
That team was comprised of coach Terry Brown, his son Casey Brown, David Farmer, Bobby Miller, Wade Richardson and freshman Jeffery Van Horne.
“We won the district and set a record score of 597 at regionals and could play with any classification against 4A and 5A competition every week,” Terry Brown said.
Terry Brown said when the Panthers got to state, they had a terrible first round as they were eight shots behind the leader in the Lindale Eagles.
On day two, Mabank stormed back and Casey Brown — who went to the University of Arkansas — forced sudden death.
“You can still remember it but not all of the fine details,” Casey Brown said. “I remember hitting a wedge from a 135 yards out to about three foot out and then making the putt to force sudden death.”
Farmer said remembering back on that team, there was one thing that stood out on day two at the Morris-Williams Golf Course in Austin.
“We had a lot of ego on that team with myself included,” Farmer said. “We thought we were really good and the fact that we were behind, we did not like that at all.”
Farmer said after 25 years, it is amazing to know they still hold that record for the only state title.
“For the most part, we were a very close knit team and all five of us played together on a daily basis,” Farmer said. “We pushed each other and did a lot of competition between all of us. It is great that after 25 years I keep in contact with three of the other four guys.”
A big key to the Panthers success that year came from team assistant Red Murphy.
“Red Murphy was letting us know where we stood throughout the round and I guess it took like 30 minutes or so for us to go back out and play after the round,” Casey Brown said. “I remember Dad and I were goofing off and he was not really getting us together and saying this is what we have to do.”
The state tournament was the second time Mabank and Lindale battled for the top prize.
Mabank beat Lindale by six shots at regionals and Texarkana Pleasant Grove by nine shots.
Pleasant Grove was looking to win their third state title in a row.
“It is pretty special and it is hard to think about it being as special as it is,” Casey Brown said. “It is the only state championship that Mabank has ever had but we worked hard for it and Coach Brown is as good of a golf coach as anybody is out there.”