GOSHEN – For the first time since 2002, the East Clinton boys golf team has won a league championship.
The Astros were runnersup Thursday in the Southern Buckeye Athletic & Academic Conference National Division tournament and won the overall National Division crown by 35 strokes.
Gage McConahay came out of nowhere to shoot a 78 (37-41) Thursday and was runnerup in the 18-hole finale. His strong finish put him second overall in the league, behind National Division player of the year Lance Sininger of Georgetown. Sininger had a 71 on Thursday and finished with a 315 total for the 72 holes of league play. McConahay had a 381 total.
“Gage hit the ball really well today,” East Clinton coach Mike Deters said. “He said he missed a couple of putts he felt like he should have made.”
The 37 on the front nine was McConahay’s best nine-hole total of the year and the 78 is a personal best for 18 holes.
East Clinton had a big lead going into the final 18 holes and despite not winning the tournament, the Astros were able to claim the league championship by 35 – 1,550 to 1,585 for Georgetown. Clermont Northeastern was third in the final standings.
“All the kids felt that if they went out and played their game, it would take care of itself,” Deters said. “After the first nine, they were struggling a little bit and I told them to hang in there. They played pretty loose.”
Brendon Walters had an 88 on Thursday and Jacob Olds had a 101 but both players were able to earn first-team All-SBAAC honors, along with McConahay.
Shane Streber and Logan Kelly, also of ECHS, were second team players.
Jacob Miller posted the low score of the tournament for Blanchester with a 99 (51-45).
The last time East Clinton won a league championship in boys golf was in 2002 when Tom Clemens coached the Astros. Team members were Jeremy McGraw, Tim Joy, Todd Surber, Doug Wilkin, Ryan Curtis, Jake Figgins and Sarah Ellis. Ironically, the championship came while East Clinton was a member of the SBAAC the first time. EC was a member of the South Central Ohio League in between stints in the SBAAC.
Now the Astros prepare for the Division II sectional tournament at Pipestone Golf Course. Not an easy task.
“We play in a tough sectional,” Deters admits. “We aren’t going to settle for a league title but this was our (main) goal going into the season, win the SBAAC and then try to take that into the sectional at Pipestone.”
Sept 14 2017
SBAAC National Division
@Eagles Nest Golf Course
GEORGETOWN (347) Lance Sininger 34-38-72 Alex Zurbuch 47-44-91 Kaden Mountain 42-53-95 Austin Meranda 53-57-110 Kyle Cornett 47-42-89 Carson Ralston 46-50-96
EAST CLINTON (352) Jacob Olds 46-55-101 Brendon Walters 46-42-88 Gage McConahay 37-41-78 Logan Kelly 47-46-93 Shane Streber 44-49-93 Brandon Michael 55-59-114
WILLIAMSBURG (379) Jordan Black 45-43-88 Jacob Wells 42-43-85 Michael Fisher 48-50-98 Nate Bogan 55-53-108
CLERMONT NE (388) Chris Moorhouse 39-47-86 Foster Kuntz 47-51-98 Layne Todd 54-49-103 Zaid Ahmad 46-55-101 Joey Putnam 48-59-107 Jake Ansteatt 57-59-116
FELICITY (392) Nathan Peace 44-50-94 Paul Bostic 48-48-96 Riley Pinger 52-52-104 Devin Cummins 58-58-116 Nathaniel Buckler 50-48-98 Sam Clark 52-54-106
BLANCHESTER (403) Connor Cook 55-48-103 Jacob Miller 51-45-96 Ashlin Benne 54-51-105 Brian MIller 53-46-99
BETHEL-TATE (411) Tony Cecil 52-43-95 Isaac White 45-54-99 Dallas Kaylar 54-49-103 Dylan Fultz 57-59-116 Griffin Reinhart 58-56-114