By Pete Temple, Express Sports Editor
Monticello bounced back from a slow start to have an outstanding back nine, lifting the Panther boys golf team to a second place finish in sectional play and advancing them to Friday’s district competition with a chance to qualify for State.
The Panthers collected scores of 39, 39, 39 and 40 on the back nine among their four counting scores during the tournament, held Friday, May 10 at the Monticello Golf Club.
As the host, the Panthers needed a top-two finish to advance to districts, and achieved that with relative ease, beating third place Cascade by 15 strokes.
“It was a good meet for us,” Monticello coach Curt Tauke said. “The boys did a nice job of recognizing what we needed to do.”
Dyersville Beckman was the runaway winner with 303, the Panthers totaled 325, and Cascade had 340. Since the host school was among the top two, the third place team, Cascade, also gets to advance.
Of the four scores that counted in the Panthers’ final score, three of the players knocked a combined 12 strokes off of their scores from the front nine.
“We didn’t play great on the front, but I was very happy with the way we came back on the back side,” Tauke said. “Other teams did not play as well on the back, so we were able to stretch our lead (for second place).”
Sam Boyd was consistent, shooting a 41 and then a 40. Ben Bollwitt went from a 44 to a 39 to finish with 83. Jacob Bergman followed a 45 with a 39.
At the top of the list was senior Tim Norton, whose 38-39-77 put him in a three-way tie for second place. Through a playoff, he wound up third, giving him one of the four individual slots in the district tournament.
The Panthers are scheduled to play in the Class 2A district meet Friday, May 17 at Geneva Golf Course in Muscatine. The top two teams and top four individuals will advance to state competition.
“This course is significantly different from ours,” Tauke said. “We’re happy to be there. Hopefully we’ll get the chance to play well.”
Prior to the sectional meet, the Panthers played a makeup dual meet against Midland, and scored a 167 to 188 victory. Because of Midland’s low numbers, the top four scores for each team counted as the varsity total, and the next four made up the JV total.
Cody Menster led Monticello and was meet medalist with a 39. Midland was led by Brandon Dirks with a 44.
Cody Menster 39, Tim Norton 41, Ben Bollwitt 43, Jacob Bergman 44.
Brandon Dirks 44, Hagan Ackley 46, Trae Osterkamp 46, Alex Franzen 52.
JUNIOR VARSITY RESULTS
Monticello 185, Midland 245. Monticello cards: Michael Reuter 46, Carter Bronemann 46, Ty Leibold 46, Marcus Norton 47. Midland cards: Colton Dirks 53, Colin Feuss 60, Dalton Harms 65, Onwa Elicore 67.
Class 2A Sectional
1, Dyersville Beckman 303; 2, Monticello 325; 3, Cascade 340; 4, Clayton Ridge 348; 5, Bellevue 372; 6, Northeast 382; 7, Alburnett 392; 8, Maquoketa Valley 393.
Tim Norton 38-39-77, Sam Boyd 41-40-81, Ben Bollwitt 44-39 – 83, Jacob Bergman 45-39-84, Cody Menster 48-41-89, Marcus Norton 46-51-97.
INDIVIDUAL DISTRICT QUALIFIERS
1, Chance Maiers, Beckman, 69; 2, Austin Lynch, Cascade*, 77; 3, Tim Norton*, Monticello, 77; 4, Chapin Maiers*, Beckman, 77.
* – playoff determined second through fourth places
PHOTO: Sam Boyd of Monticello chips out of trouble during the sectional meet May 10 in Monticello. (Photo by Pete Temple)