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A-3 boys golf: Leopards junior one stroke shy of states; Bishop applauds fifth-place finish

Team scores: Ocala Trinity Catholic 306, Crystal River 323, Saddlebrook 324, Ocala St. John Lutheran 329, Bishop McLaughlin 334, Mount Dora 336, Wesley Chapel 340, Pasco 356, Academy at the Lakes 426

Individuals: T. Lauster (SS) 69, M. Mullarky (CR) 70, W. Hopkins (TC) 72, E. Byrd (TC) 73, Z. Teele (H) 75, K. Toyota (BM) 77, D. Drumm (BM) 77, A. Bensahel (SP) 77, S. Kim (SP) 77, R. Hoverman (CDS) 78

WESLEY CHAPEL — Not one stroke was spared.

No matter how many hours Saddlebrook Prep spent on the driving range, the greens and ultimately its home course, Monday proved focus is paramount.

The Spartans missed advancing to state by one stroke, falling to second-place Crystal River 323-324, and ultimately Ocala Trinity Catholic and its mind-bending score of 306.

None of the North Suncoast teams or individuals advanced to next week's state tournament.

Saddlebrook coach Mark Hirschey was firm in his response to the round: "They played poor and they didn't deserve to move on," he said. "… I can't explain it. I wish I could; I would be a millionaire. I hope they're disappointed."

Alex Bensahel and Seokil Kim led Saddlebrook with matching 6-over-par 77s, good for a sixth-place tie on the Palmer Course. Adam Chowdhari shot 84 and Arthur Edelman shot 86.

Despite not advancing, Bishop McLaughlin and coach Jim Globokar were pleased with the Hurricanes' team score of 334 for fifth. Kentaro Toyota, who finished tied for sixth overall, led them with 77. Marc Doucette shot 85, James Nelson and Scott Hiteman each shot 86.

"I'm thrilled," Globokar said. "We improved by 28 strokes from last week. … To be able to have our best score of the year under the pressure of the regional tournament is something."

Wesley Chapel finished seventh with 340 and was led by 79s from Jacob Fleck and Brandon Mumaw. Matthew Wynne shot 87 and Patrick Barnes 95.

Pasco was eighth (356) with its best finish since 1999. The Pirates were led by Stephan Lavelle's 85. Winston Johnson III shot 89, Eric Clayton 93 and Jaxon Moore 101.

Individually, Hernando junior Zack Teele learned on the 18th tee that he needed bogey or better to qualify for state. A new rule this season requires individual state qualifiers to be within five strokes of the leader.

Teele finished with 75, six strokes behind St. John Lutheran's Teddy Lausier, who shot a tournament-best 69.

"It was two dumb mistakes I made on the front," Teele said. "Otherwise I played really well. It's okay because I'm a junior. I still have next year.

And Carrollwood Day's Ryan Hoverman shot 78th to finish 10th. Nature Coast's Dayne Dukes shot 88.

Izzy Gould can be reached at [email protected] or (813) 421-3886.

A-3 boys golf: Leopards junior one stroke shy of states; Bishop applauds fifth-place finish 10/26/09 [Last modified: Monday, October 26, 2009 11:09pm]
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