CRETE | Depth is the key to success in team golf. It’s great to have a consistent low man, but without five solid players, a team won’t go far.
Marian Catholic could go far this season, based on the numbers the Spartans put up Tuesday at Balmoral Woods. A pair of 82s from Neil Doyle and Matt Hershberger, plus 85s from Ryan Kelly and Mike Millsaps and an 88 by sophomore Casey Domke, the one non-senior among the first five, added up to a third place finish in the T.F. South Invitational.
And Domke’s score didn’t even count toward the Spartans’ total of 46- over-par 334.
“If we can keep that rolling, we’ll be pretty happy,” Hershberger said. “We hope to go down to state. If we all play to our potential, we should.”
Course management, beginning with a par save on the challenging par-5 seventh hole, his first of the day, accounted for some of Hershberger’s success.
“The key out here is to not hit driver very much, but to just stay straight,” Hershberger said. “I hit driver twice today, and that was it. Just keep the ball straight.”
In contrast, Doyle pulled driver from his bag more often, and scored the same.
“I was feeling pretty confident with it. You’ve definitely got to put it in play out there,” Doyle said. “You stray off the tee, it definitely hurts you. And I was able to make a lot of putts.”
Doyle and Hershberger were six strokes behind Beecher’s Michael Barber and Bradley Bourbonnais’ Kyle Dwyer, who posted 4-over-par 76s.
Dwyer was given the first place medal on a scorecard playoff.
Barber’s round included a pair of 12-foot birdie putts on an inward nine of 1-under 33, which was two strokes better than Dwyer’s closing nine.
“I hit fairways, greens, and didn’t screw up,” Barber said.
Sandburg won the team competition, scoring 28-over 316 on the strength of Nick Adduce’s 77 and Mike Misheck’s 79. Bradley Bourbonnais (321) was second.
T.F. South sophomore Maggie Sloan, starting her second season as the lone female on the team, led the Rebels with a 12-over 84, and was followed by Josh Crosby’s 88. Homewood-Flossmoor’s Brent Hughes paced the Vikings with an 85, while Crete-Monee was led by Joe Despain’s 88, built on equal nines of 44. T.F. North had a tough day, with Juan Gutierrez scoring 116 to pace the three-man Meteors squad.