After spending most of the 2020 season chasing the Hillsboro Indians, the Washington Blue Lion boys golf team won the Frontier Athletic Conference 18-hole tournament and, with Hillsboro placing third, Washington was able to vault ahead and into first place in the combined standings to win the FAC championship.
The Blue Lions shot a 358 Tuesday at The Greens.
Chillicothe was second with a 362, followed by Hillsboro with a 364.
McClain was fourth with a team score of 370, Jackson was fifth with a 386 and Miami Trace was sixth with a 390.
The final standings have Washington at 29-6, followed by Hillsboro at 28-7.
McClain places third overall at 18-17, followed by Chillicothe at 15-20.
Jackson’s final FAC record for the season was 12-23 and Miami Trace was 2-33.
Hillsboro’s Gabe Mycroft was the FAC Golfer of the Year. He had a season FAC 9-hole average of 40.833.
Also being named First Team, All-FAC, in the order they finished in the conference, were: J.T. Kobel, Chillicothe, 42.333; Wes Potts, McClain, 42.833; Lawton Parry, Hillsboro, 43.833; Garrett Wahl, Washington, 43.883; Ethan Rasp, Jackson, 44.0 and Brice Cartwright, Washington, 44.167.
Kobel was the tournament medalist with a 79.
For the Blue Lions, Ty Rose led with a score of 88.
Garrett Wahl shot an 89, Brice Cartwright had a 90, John Wall, 91, Drew Ferguson, 97 and Luke Crabtree, 102.
Gavin Cowden led Miami Trace with a 95. Kaden Noble shot a 96 and Bryce Eggleton had a 97. Dillon Farley had a 102, followed by Collin Farrens, 105 and Christian Porter, 109.
“We started the season off well,” Washington head coach Shannon Bartruff said. “We were pretty close with Hillsboro in the first couple of matches. I think Hillsboro won the first two and we placed second in the first couple (of FAC matches).
“Then, at Buckeye Hills, we placed fourth there,” Bartruff said. “That kind of put us behind the 8-ball a little bit. Then we won our league match (at The Greens) and we played really well at Chillicothe and that put us back in the hunt.
“The only way we could have won league today was the way that it happened,” Bartruff said. “We took first place and Hillsboro had to finish third or worse. And they finished third. That allowed us to beat them by one match.
“I’m really proud of these kids,” Bartruff said. “We’ve got three freshmen on our team (John Wall, Garrett Wahl and Luke Crabtree) that have been contributing all year. We have one junior, Drew Ferguson, who has come up with some huge 9-hole matches during the season to keep us in a couple of matches.
“We have two seniors who have been great leaders, not only this year, but the last couple of years,” Bartruff said. “Ty Rose and Brice Cartwright. Brice is First Team, all-league his senior year. Ty is a part of a league championship team. So, it’s been a cool year.
“I like the kids’ demeanor,” Bartruff said. “A couple of them were really, really frustrated with how they played today. As a coach, you try to let them know that golf is a struggle. You’re going to have bad holes and you’re going to have big numbers. You just have to keep grinding along, especially in an 18-hole match.
“I’m super-proud of these guys,” Bartruff said. “I really appreciative of The Greens, Christy and Marvin Larrick. They’ve been great all year, allowing us to come out and play. The course is in great shape. They’ve shut the course down for a lot of our matches this year, which allows us to play really, really fast. They’ve been extremely hospitable.”
“We’ve improved tremendously since last year,” Miami Trace head coach Rob Smith said. “The average score today was better than anything we had last year. This entire season we’ve scored better than any match last year, so, we’ve improved a lot.
“We have a real good nucleus that will be back next year,” Smith said. “Out of our varsity golfers, we have only one senior (Collin Farrens). The rest are young. I’m tickled with where we are at. A couple of breaks today, a couple of kids who usually score well didn’t score as well. Our other kids came through and scored half-way decent today. We’re getting better as a program and I look for this to (carry over) into next season.”
The Division I Sectional tournament is next for Miami Trace. It is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 8 and Crown Hill Golf Club just outside of Williamsport.
“At the Sectionals, we’re hoping a couple of kids can knock off a couple of strokes, since they take four individuals (on to the District tournament), if we can lower our scores, they might have a chance of making it to Districts,” Smith said.
The Division II Sectional will be held Tuesday, Sept. 29 at the Jaycees Golf Course in Chillicothe.
“Only five guys get to go to that, so, we’re going to have to figure out who our top five averages are,” Bartruff said. “Any parents or fans who want to come down next week, they are charging $8 admission. They’ve never done that before. And, if you want to ride in a cart, I’ve heard it’s going to cost you $20. I don’t have the ticket information yet, but I’ll be getting that out to the parents.”
Scores for McClain: Seth Wise, 81; Wes Potts, 89; Carson Spangler, 100; David Edwards, 100; Isaac Carroll, 103 and Robbie Wise, 106.
Scores for Hillsboro: Gabe Mycroft, 88; Gavin Puckett, 88; Lawton Parry, 94; Jack Rhoades, 94; Bentley Watson, 96; Josh Crawford, 104.
Scores for Chillicothe: J.T. Kobel, 79; Jackson Bolen, 89; Luke Smith, 96; Kaiden Koch, 98; Wesley Scott, 105; Jacob Lemaster, 106.
Scores for Jackson: Ethan Rasp, 89; Caleb Rose, 93; Peyton Hill, 97; Mason Hively, 107; Camryn Rose, 118.