Chieftains win KVL golf tournament
THS breaks school record with 297
When the Tonganoxie High golf team teed off at Wednesday's Kaw Valley League meet, senior Colby Yates approached coach Jared Jackson with a question. Yates wanted to know if THS had a chance of finishing under 300.
Jackson admitted it was a tall task, but his squad was apparently up to the challenge. THS won its second straight league title, carding a team score of 297 at Eagle Bend Golf Course in Lawrence.
The Chieftains' score breaks the school record of 305, which they set on April 26 at the Atchison Invitational. They dominated the KVL tournament field, defeating second-place finisher Piper by a full 20 strokes.
"I guess Colby knows a little more than I do," Jackson said. "We've been playing well and we feel like we keep improving every time out."
Yates led the charge with a season-low total of 70 — good enough for first in the individual ranks. He was one of four THS players to finish under 80. Sophomore Drew Sandburg finished third overall with a 72, senior Kody Campbell took sixth with a 77 and junior Tyler Hall came in seventh with a 78.
The Chieftains have had four players finish in the 70s before, but according to Jackson, it was Sandburg's season-low finish that made the biggest difference.
"We finally had that second guy go really low," Jackson said. "That's something that really separates those outstanding scores."
Senior Tanner Hale and junior Aaron Williams rounded out THS' individual scoring with marks of 83 and 87, respectively.
Jackson's squad will be back on the links Monday when it competes in Class 4A regional action at Bonner Springs' Sunflower Hills Golf Course. The Chieftains are no strangers to the course, as they've competed and practiced on it throughout the season.
"The thing that does is it takes the uncertainty out of it," Jackson said. "(Our golfers) will be real confident that they have the right club out there. You still have to execute it, but there's not going to be any second guessing."
The tournament field consists of Baldwin, Basehor-Linwood, Bonner Springs, Santa Fe Trail, De Soto, Piper, Bishop Ward, St. James Academy and Topeka-Hayden. Hayden won last year's state tournament, while St. James was the 2010 champion.
"This is, by far, the best regional field I've seen in my five years (in Tonganoxie)," Jackson said. "You're going to have to come out and play some good golf or your season is probably going to be done."
The top two finishers will advance to the Class 4A state tournament, which will be May 21 at Dub's Dread Golf Course in Kansas City.
Overall team results
1. Tonganoxie, 297; 2. Piper, 317; 3. Mill Valley, 329; 4. Bonner Springs, 341; 5. Basehor-Linwood, 355; 6. Turner, 361; 7. Lansing, 362; 8. Bishop Ward, 399.
THS individual results
- Colby Yates, 70; 2. Drew Sandburg, 72; 3. Kody Campbell, 77; 4. Tyler Hall, 78; 5. Tanner Hale, 83; 6. Aaron Williams, 87.
Top-10 individual results
1. Colby Yates, TON, 70; 2. Marc McClain, BS, 72; 3. Drew Sandburg, TON, 72; 4. Parker Miller, PIP, 74; 5. Charlie Rinehart, PIP, 75; 6. Kody Campbell, TON, 77; 7. Tyler Hall, TON, 78; 8. Jalen Oehlert, MV, 81; 9. Ben Hadden, MV, 81; 10. Tristan Abts, BS, 82.