Even in the individual sport of golf there can be some team accomplishments to enjoy. For the first time in a long time, Lee’s Summit got to enjoy one of those Tuesday.
Lee’s Summit took second place in the Class 4 District 7 golf tournament, which made the Tigers one of the two teams to advance to next week’s sectional meet. It’s something that’s never happened before in Manning Williams’ 20-plus years as the Tigers’ coach.
“This is the first time I’ve ever been able to take a team to sectionals, which is nice,” Williams said. “I’ve had four qualify before but this is nice to take the whole team. They deserve it.”
Lee’s Summit earned it with a 332 team total on the soggy Fred Arbanas Golf Course at Longview Lake. The Tigers bunched together four consistent rounds, led by Jackson Eaton’s 6 over-par 78 that placed him sixth in medalist play. Jackson McGuire shot an 83 and tied for 10th, Conner Johnston shot an 84 and tied for 12th and Ryan Mehrer came in with an 87.
Alex Waisner, who had a 92, will get to join the other four in Monday’s sectional at Paradise Pointe in Smithville.
“They’ve been playing really consistent,” Williams said. “It gets a little different come districts, everyone gets a little tighter. But the kids have put a lot of time in, they just have fun and they play hard.”
That tightness may have made the scores a little higher, Williams said, along with the rain-softened conditions on the course. Williams said several Tigers struggled at the start, including Eaton, who double bogeyed his third hole. But Eaton recovered to stand 2-over at the turn, and the other Tigers followed suit.
“That was our goal, to advance as a team,” Eaton said. “It was exciting that we were able to do it.”
Lee’s Summit North finished third with a 341, but the Broncos placed four among the top 15 individuals who also advance to sectionals along with the two teams. Michael Worth’s 2-over 76 led the way for the Broncos and placed him second behind the 74 shot by medalist Jacob Propeck of team champion Rockhurst.
“It was a good day,” said Worth, who ended his round with a birdie on No 18. “It was a little wet out there, but I thought it was going to be worse. I started out well and I just wanted to keep myself stable throughout the round and not have any huge numbers.”
Worth, a two-time state qualifier, will head to sectionals with fellow Bronco Brock Witmer, who tied for 13th with an 86. Nathan Shull (88) and Michael Foster (91) also made the cut.
Lee’s Summit West, which also finished at 341 but placed fourth with a higher fifth score, had four qualifiers as well. James O’Connor shot an 80 and placed eighth overall, Parker Jones tied for 13th with an 86, Logan Dahmer shot an 87 and Charlie Russell had an 88.
Rockhurst ran away with the team title with a 305 that included Propeck’s 74 and three 77s, but Eaton and the Tigers didn’t mind. They get to take a team, too. The top two teams and 12 individuals at sectionals will move on to the Class 4 state meet May 15-16 at the Twin Hills Golf and Country Club in Joplin.
“As a team we’re feeling good going into sectionals,” Eaton said. “Hopefully we can duplicate this and score well as a team there, too.”
SCA takes district
Alex Brown took medalist honors and led Summit Christian Academy to a first-place finish in the Class 2 District 7 tournament Monday at Excelsior Springs Golf Course.
Brown shot a 7-over 79 for a 2-stroke victory in medalist play over Richard Bray of Barstow and Jesse Graham of Archie. Keegan Glade and Sam Huckabee tied for sixth at 89, Corbin Healy was ninth at 91 and Colin Glade tied for 11th at 98 for the Eagles.
SCA finished with a 348 total. O’Hara took second with 385 and also qualified for the sectional tournament, which will take place Monday at Shirkey Golf Course in Richmond.