The event finished in the hardest rain of the day. When all was counted, two teams tied at 319, with Westlake getting the win over Ashland on the strength of the score of the fifth player.
Ironically, both the medalist and the runner-up came from Ashland, Freshman Tyler Sabo shot an unbelievable 73 — which was right on his average. His card showed three birdies, two of them coming on the par 3 holes on the back. His senior teammate, Max Watson, shot 74.
The local contingents were tightly-bunched. Norwalk was the best, placing 12th with a 373 total, five shots better than Willard (378), Bellevue recorded a 380, while Edison shot a 391. St. Paul continues to gain experience, as Mike McLaughlin’s team shot a 470.
Norwalk junior Carter Kluding shot an 83, missing the all-tournament team by one shot. Other Trucker scores came from Zach Crane (94), Gavin Koelsch (97), Noah Scheel (99) and Kyle Smith (101).
“Certainly not our best,” Norwalk coach Wes Douglas said. “You have to shoot in the 80s in this one to be in contention. We’ll get back on the course and prepare for our last conference match at home on Monday with Bellevue and Sandusky — and then see how things shake out at Mohawk the following week.
“Five teams and five individuals get out of there,” he added. “We have a shot, but we have to be a lot better than we were today.”
Willard, which finished the campaign with a rock-solid 12-2 conference record, used the tournament as a warmup for their sectional — which is played at Sawmill this Thursday.
“I don’t think my players prepared over the weekend for what they were facing here this afternoon,” Willard coach Nick Wenzel said. “We have come a long way over the last three years, so it would be a shame not to give it our best effort here on Thursday.”
Senior Kalin McKelvey shot an 85 as the No. 1 Willard player. Following his lead was junior Ian Brown (93), and seniors Trey Mock (100), Mitchell Carnahan (100) and Will Lindenberger (101).
Bellevue’s No. 5 player, Hudson Strayer, led Jan TerVeen’s team with a 90. The other scores came from Alex Martinez (95), Leyne Krupp (98), Conner Rospert (97) and Garrett Vickery (107).
Edison’s lone senior, Casey Fair, fired an 88 from his No. 1 spot. Following him were Aden Hall (90), Noah Pulaski (98) and Conner Betts (115).
St. Paul’s best effort came from its No. 1, Jackson Cook, who shot a 94. The rest struggled as Logan Amato carded a 120, followed by Luke Meyer (123), David Swope (133) and Nathan Juby (144).
Annually, the tournament committee chooses someone who has been instrumental in aiding the cause of high school golf. This year the award was presented to longtime greens superintendent at Sawmill Creek, Jim Harmon.
“Jim goes above and beyond in making sure the course is in perfect condition for this event,” tournament director Shayne Fischer said.
The following is the order of finish:
1. Westlake 319, (won scorecard playoff)
2. Ashland 319
3. Perkins 349
4. Olmsted Falls 353
5. Vermilion 357
6. Clyde 360
7. Genoa 363
8. Ontario 367
9. Shelby and Amherst (tie) 368
10. Margaretta 369
11. Clear Fork 370
12. Norwalk 373
13. Woodmore 377
14. Willard 378
15. Bellevue 380
16. Port Clinton 381
17. Midview 383
18. Edison and Oak Harbor (tie) 391
19. Huron 427
20. Bucyrus 443
21. St. Mary C.C. 455
22. St. Paul 470