Alter boys golf runner-up at state tourney for 3rd straight year

The Alter boys golf team finished second Saturday in the Division II state tournament at NorthStar Golf Club in Sunbury. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO
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The Alter boys golf team finished second Saturday in the Division II state tournament at NorthStar Golf Club in Sunbury. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Alter struggled on the front nine Saturday and fell three strokes short in its bid for a Division II state boys golf championship at NorthStar Golf Club in Sunbury.

The Knights’ 10-stroke lead after Friday’s opening round evaporated quickly against Columbus Academy and turned into a two-stroke deficit through nine holes. The rest of the match was tight, but CA emerged with a 611-614 victory over Alter for its fifth straight state title and 12th overall.

“It was a disappointing outcome and we thought things should go differently,” Knights coach Alex Schuster said. “That’s golf, but that doesn’t take anything away from what we accomplished this season.”

The Knights competed in their 25th state tournament and were trying to win their first state title since 1999 and fifth overall. They have now finished third twice and second three straight times to CA in the past five state tournaments. The Knights have been runner-up eight times since their first appearance in 1974.

Saturday’s 320 score was the Knights’ highest 18-hole score of the season, but their 614 total was the lowest state tournament score in school history. Including Friday’s first round, the Knights shot under 300 14 times this season.

“These kids have been incredible players, incredible attitudes and probably the best season of golf in the history of Alter High School,” Schuster said. “That’s something to be proud of.”

Alter sophomore Davis Gochenouer shot a team-low 79 Saturday and finished as runner-up for the second straight year with a two-day total of 149. Connor Ritter of Magnolia Sandy Valley shot 76 Saturday to win the individual championship with a 1-over-par total of 145.

Alter senior Brody Simms and freshman T.J. Kreusch both shot 80 Saturday. Kreusch finished tied for eight at 153 and Simms finished 11th at 155. Junior Grant Tabar shot 81 for 16 and tied for 14th to round out Alter’s scoring. Senior Tommy Grawe shot 82 and tied for 17th.

CA was led by last year’s individual champion Stephen Ma. He shot a 76 and finished tied for third at 150.

Middletown Fenwick’s Luke Metzger shot his second straight 76 for a 152 total and a tie for sixth place. Teammate Colin Schadek shot 85 to finish at 166 in a tie for 31st. Noah Lindsey of Waynesville shot 77 for a 156 total and tied for 12th.

In the Division III tournament at OSU Scarlet, Botkins finished fourth. Berlin Hiland won the team title by eight strokes.

Girls: Chaminade-Julienne senior Grace Strickland fired a 77 on the OSU Gray course in the Division II tournament to finish tied for ninth with a two-day total of 159.

Fort Recovery’s Jalyn Burns shot 81 for a 156 total and finished fourth, 10 shots behind champion Ella Wong of Gates Mills Hawkins. Wong shot 75 for a 146 total.

Middletown Fenwick finished fifth at 693 and 37 shots behind champion Lima Central Catholic. Jocelyn Wright led Fenwick with an 84, a 164 total and placed 18th. Fort Loramie finished seventh and Coldwater was ninth in the 12-team field.

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