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Senior McConnell bogey-free in Riverview's record-setting win

RIVERVIEW — Riverview senior Ian McConnell stepped to his first tee box Tuesday afternoon at Summerfield Crossings Golf Club woefully deprived of sleep.

About 21/2 hours later, his scorecard remained deprived of a bogey.

Fresh off a prestigious weekend junior tournament in Oklahoma, the Sharks standout birdied two of his final three holes en route to 2-under-par 33 on the back nine.

The effort highlighted a school-record 151 team score for the Sharks (12-0), who watched three players eclipse 40 in a 32-stroke victory over Durant.

"It was kind of a tiring day all around, having to go to school and everything," said McConnell, whose flight landed in Tampa around 1:30 Tuesday morning, seven hours before he had to report to his first class. "But this kind of woke me up a little bit."

On the heels of his encouraging 18th-place finish at the Ping Invitational in Stillwater, Okla., McConnell was nearly flawless on the fairway Tuesday.

He hit his first eight greens — the first four within 15 feet — before watching the streak end when his third shot on the par-5 18th hit the back fringe about 30 feet from the pin.

He chipped in his fourth shot for birdie.

"I've been feeling good all weekend; I was hitting the ball good out in Oklahoma," said McConnell, a Liberty University commitment who seeks his third consecutive district title next week at Summerfield.

"I've been hitting the driver well so I felt good with it. I just started piping it all day and hit the irons really good, too, setting myself up. If I had made a few putts, I would've been in the 20s today."

Indeed, had it not been for a couple of putting and procedural miscues, Riverview might have shattered the team scoring record instead of merely eclipsing it by a stroke.

Senior Connor Murphy finished with 38 that would have been lower had his birdie on No. 10 not been nullified by a two-stroke penalty for having too many clubs in his bag. Senior R.J. Slater added 39 despite four three-putts. Senior Travis Hopson's 41 rounded out Riverview's scoring.

"We've just got to put it all together on one day (next week for districts)," Sharks coach Ron Slater said.

Senior McConnell bogey-free in Riverview's record-setting win 10/13/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, October 13, 2009 11:30pm]
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