OLDSMAR — Fivay senior Austin Padova has played a total of two 18-hole invitationals in his high school career.
Two years ago as a sophomore at Ridgewood, Padova placed second to then-teammate Jon Kopsell at the East Lake Invitational.
Monday, Padova bettered that, earning low round honors at the Outback Invitational hosted by Mitchell at 1-under 71 on the North Course at East Lake Woodlands Country Club.
"I was kind of off and on," said Padova, who tied for 15th at the Class A state tournament a year ago. "Midway through the round, I had a few kind of stupid bogeys, but I got it back with a few good birdies at the end."
Padova scorched his way over the final few holes of the course, recording three birdies over the final four holes, all on par 5s. On No. 3, his final hole, the senior stuck his approach within 8 feet of the pin and drained a straight-in putt to earn the win.
St. Petersburg's Jake Kevorkian finished one stroke back of Padova at par 72 to take second.
"I was kind of skeptical after No. 17 because (Gaither's) Jimmy Stanger was pretty close," Padova said. "…He had a few bad holes and I made a few birdies and got it back."
Fivay finished 10th with a score of 345 in the 13-team tournament.
Host Mitchell had the best finish among North Suncoast schools, placing fifth at 319. The Mustangs had two golfers crack the leaderboard. Donnie Gabrelcik (2-over 74) tied for sixth place. Dylan Strout shot 78 to tie for 15th.
Jesuit was the overall team champion after posting a round of 310. The Tigers, who defeated East Lake by two strokes, were led by Lucas Trim (73), Jamie Sullivan (77) and Joseph Trim (79).
Dr. Phillips won a tiebreaker over St. Petersburg for third place after both came into the clubhouse with a team score of 314.