Pacers fourth in golf Sectional; Whitham qualifies for Regional

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Tied for a spot in the Regional at the turn, the Switzerland County boys varsity golf team fell just short of advancing, but earned a respectable fourth place overall in Monday’s IHSAA Golf Sectional held at Sunrise Golf Course in Madison.

The host Madison team won the Sectional with a team score of 305; followed by Jennings County in second with a score of 350; and Henryville was third, also with a score of 350. The top three teams advance to the Regional.

Switzerland County, which was tied at the nine-hole turn with both Jennings County and Henryville, finished in fourth place overall with a team score of 360; followed by Southwestern with 366; Scottsburg with 373; Rising Sun with 384; Austin with 418; New Washington with 441; and Charlestown with 475.

A big bright spot for the Pacers was the junior golfer Kyle Whitham advanced to the Regional as an individual. State rules say that individuals with the top three scores on teams that don’t advance get to play at the next level of state tournament play.

Whitham had scores of 43 on the front and the back nines to finish with a total of 86, which was the third lowest score among individual qualifiers. Hunter Mefford of Southwestern qualified with a 77; and Carter Bowles of Scottsburg had an 83.

With the jubilation over Whitham’s advancement, there was also heartbreak, as senior Nick Braun recorded scores of 45-42 for an 18-hole total of 87. That slotted him in fourth place as an individual, just missing out on the chance to also play in the Regional.

Other Switzerland County scores included Nate Braun, who had a 43-48=91; Josh Tice, who had a 48-48=96; and Hunter Hayes, who had a 46-56=102.

Rising Sun, which had won the conference tournament, didn’t fare as well at the Sectional level. Individual scores for the Shiners were: Brent Turner, 44-45=89; Sam Markland, 48-46=94; Angelo Gallegos, 49-51=100; Brent Webb, 49-52=101; and Tristan Brown, 50-53=103.

The individual medalist for the Sectional was Austin Mahoney of Madison, who had a 38 on the front nine and a scorching 33 on the back to finish with a one under par 71.