What does "straggle on his chin" mean?

As I shook his hand, a kid cruising by—no more than a sophomore, judging by the fresh crop of pimples and the serio-comic straggle on his chin that aspired to goateehood—muttered, "Hoptoad Harry, hoppin down the av-a-new."

It was phrase from stephen king novel

straggle on his chin

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    Please stop providing only images in your questions. You need to transcribe the phrase you're interested in (with context) for those people with screen readers who can only make sense of text. – Jason Bassford Feb 1 '19 at 16:44

In this context it's clear that it means a small amount of beard hair.

"straggle" would normally apply to a small, disorganised grouping or movement, and the author has extended the meaning to beard hair, here.

https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/straggle to move or spread untidily and in small numbers or amounts:

  • I put my hair up because I don't like it straggling down my back.
  • A year after the hurricane, tourists are beginning to straggle (= come in small numbers) back to the region.
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straggle OED

  1. A body or group of scattered objects; an irregular or fitful emergence (of something); a thin, lank, or untidy growth (of hair). Also Comb.

Here in a registry, straggle does have the sense of an 'aspiring goateehood'!

As in the following, specifically referring to facial hair: google books

He was the youngest of the trio, with a full set of teeth and only a straggle of facial hair.

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