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Norwalk's Sommers advances to Division I district

By DON HOHLER • Updated Oct 1, 2019 at 7:31 PM

SYCAMORE — Justin Sommers will be carrying the Norwalk banner at the Division I district golf tournament at Sycamore Springs in Arlington next Thursday.

One of a five-senior starting lineup for head coach Wes Douglas, Sommers fashioned an 86, one of three players in the 13-school field to advance as an individual with that score.

As far as the Norwalk team, it missed by a single stroke of advancing, shooting a cumulative 351. Two teams, the No. 4 and 5 team to advance to Red Hawk, Lexington and Mansfield Madison, each shot 350s.

Elida won the sectional title with a 323 with Ashland second at 337 and St, Marys third with 340. Lex and Madison followed.

“I sure would like to have my teammates with me,” Sommers said. “I can not believe all of us played that poorly. I am not sure what was the cause. It will be my first trip to the district.”

It certainly would not have taken much more for the Truckers to get out. Carter Kluding shot an 87, followed by Kyle Smith with an 88, Zach Crane (90) and Gavin Koelsch (92).

“I sure didn’t see it coming,” Douglas said. “The kids are disappointed as I am. We sure did not put 8s and 9s on the card en route to winning the league. They were in a great frame of mind coming in, and why not? We came over last week for a practice round and shot a 330.

“Those are five great young men who have great parent support,” he added. “It was just a bad time to have rounds like this. Our backside numbers were our downfall.”

With five seniors going out every round, Douglas is going to have to quickly put together a new five for next year. He does have talent, however. The varsity Truckers went 11-1 during the regular season in league matches and also won the tournament title — while his junior varsity team went undefeated in league play.

“I have four solid players in that group, but the bottom line is they have not played varsity golf,” Douglas said. “There is a difference.”

After Norwalk’s 351, it was Lima Shawnee and Bowling Green at 355, followed by Wapakoneta (362), Celina (429), Mansfield Senior (438) and Lima Senior (470).

Getting out with Sommers as individuals was Lima Shawnee’s Justin Allenbach with an 82, Bowling Green’s Zach Thomas with an 84, and two other 86s — Clay Wilsey and Josh Hepner from Wapakoneta.

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