“As a coach I am one that is always going to worry to the end,” said Unioto head coach Dan Drummond. “I give Westfall credit for how well they played today. We did not feel we played up to our capabilities early in the day, but I was happy with the way the kids continued to comeback and get the job done.”
Leading the way for Unioto on the trail to the title was SVC player of the year Tyler Hammond. The senior wins this award based on his average throughout the year in league play, and it was his second-nine round of 37 that served as the medal round in Unioto’s clinching win. Hammond has won his share of individual awards over the past four years, but the Unioto captain stressed afterwards that the team breaking through was always the ultimate goal.
“It feels great to finish it off as a team,” said Hammond who now leads his Unioto team into the postseason where he serves as the individual defending district champion for the southeast district in division-II. “Coach Drummond told the seniors at the beginning of the year, that we would be the only class to ever come through Unioto not to win a league title if we did not get it done this year. That was something we were not aware of at all, and it really motivated us to work hard.”
Seniors Clinton Brown and Ryan Welch also provided some great leadership and solid golf for the Shermans. Brown fired a 41 on the front side Friday morning while Welch carded a 43 on the backside, and both were constants in the Unioto lineup throughout the championship season.
“I challenged the seniors at the start of the season and they responded,” said Drummond. “I feel like our seniors provided this team some great leadership and I am really happy for them.”
The league provided some great individuals throughout the top half of each lineup; however, in the end it was Unioto’s depth that proved to be too much. The steady play of Caleb Stidham, Corey Porter, Ryan Bates, and many others from an undefeated junior varsity squad helped pick up the Shermans throughout the year. This was evident again on Friday when Bates and Stidham both contributed with a 39 and 41 respectively, and although Porter did struggle a little at Fox Fire on Friday, it was his 41 at Crown Hill Golf Course last week that helped Unioto hold off Huntington Ross and Zane Trace to win match #6 and stretch their lead to a comfortable 10-points entering the final rounds.
“Our program does continue to be blessed with great depth,” said Drummond who was named SVC coach of the year as a result of his Shermans winning their 10th league title in just the league’s 15th year of existence. “We are fortunate to have a school district that has a location where our kids are introduced to golf at a young age and I believe our tradition helps draw kids to the game as well.”
Unioto finishes the year with 60 points in the final league standings. That number is 13 points better than runner-up Westfall and 14 points better than Huntington. In fourth place is four-time defending champion in Piketon with 41 points. The Redstreaks were led on Friday by Jake Nutt who fired a league-best round of 38 during the opening round (one better than teammate Jon Crace and two better than Huntington’s Craig Magill). The league’s fifth-place team was Zane Trace at 39 points, and rounding out the league is Ross Southeastern at 28 points and Frankfort Adena and Bainbridge Paint Valley at 20 and 8 points respectively.
The SVC schools will get started in postseason play next week. Unioto will be joined by Westfall and Zane Trace in the division-II sectional tournament at Jaycees Golf Course. Piketon is also D2, but the Redstreaks will tee it up the Shawnee State in Portsmouth for their sectional tournament. Huntington, Southeastern, Paint Valley, and Adena are all division-III golf programs and they will compete for a spot in the districts later next week and their rounds are at Jaycees in Chillicothe as well.
MID-STATE LEAGUE: Ashville Teays Valley captured the Mid State League earlier this week with a win at Deer Creek Golf Course. The Vikings sealed the deal with a dominating 307 which was more than enough to get past Logan Elm’s 324 and Circleville’s 326. Teays Valley’s Nick Hoch shot a 71 to capture the medalist in the league’s final 18-hole match. The Vikings finish off their championship season at 17-1 and will enter the division-I sectional next week.
SOUTHWESTERN BUCKEYE LEAGUE: Oakwood and Middletown Madison were divisional winners in the Southwestern Buckeye League's boys high school golf tournament Thursday on the Beechwood course at Arcanum. Oakwood shot 312, one shot better than Bellbrook, to take the Southwestern Division tourney title. Madison shot 331 to take the Buckeye Division. Waynesville was second at 344. Darin Wilson of Bellbrook won a one-hole playoff vs. Ronnie Stump to take medalist honors in the Southwestern Division. Each shot 3-over-par 75. Mike Roe of Middletown Madison was the Buckeye Division medalist at 76.
The overall SWBL divisional titles are decided on a combination of points from the regular-season dual match play and finishes in the postseason tournament. Oakwood was the overall Southwestern champion while Madison and Waynesville tied overall for first place in the Buckeye. Players of the year were Brookville's Michael Day in the Southwestern Division and Ben Calvert of Carlisle in the Buckeye. (Courtesy: http://www.daytondailynews.com)
SHELBY COUNTY LEAGUE: Russia broke Anna's four-year hold on the team title, winning the league tournament with a score of 334 at Shelby Oaks. Jackson Center was second at 335. Anthony Morris was the tournament medalist with a 73. Travis Dietz of Botkins was the league player of the year based on scoring average throughout the season. (Courtesy: http://www.daytondailynews.com)
CENTRAL BUCKEYE CONFERENCE: Springfield Shawnee's Jacob Schakat was medalist with a 69, a career-low for an 18-hole tournament, to lead the Braves to their third straight Central Buckeye Conference boys golf tournament title at Liberty Hills on Thursday. Mitch Justice shot a 76, Joey Schakat carded a 78 and Doug Bodey, who has a bad wrist, still managed an 82 as Shawnee finished with a score of 305. It won the Kenton Trail Division by 14 strokes over second-place Tippecanoe.
“We had our sights set on 305 before we even tee off,” said Shawnee coach Steve Tincher. “Our seniors Jacob, Doug and Mitch have never lost a CBC match in their career. They are really proud of that.”
Graham's Ryan George was Mad River medalist with a 79 and Austin Woodruff shot an 82. The Falcons won the division by three strokes over Indian Lake with a 331. (Courtesy: http://www.springfieldnewssun.com)
OHIO HERITAGE CONFERENCE: Jordan Millice shot an 84 to help lead Triad to its second straight Ohio Heritage Conference boys golf title at Indian Springs on Tuesday. Adam Moore shot a 93, Brennan Smith a 95 and Quinton Yocom a 100 as the Cardinals totaled 372. Northeastern's Cameron Thomas shot a 90, Nick Rucker a 92 and Ben Justice a 94 as the Jets finished second (376).
David Erickson was medalist with an 81 and Pat Hovda shot an 88 as Catholic Central placed third (382). Joining Millice, Thomas, Erickson and Hovda on the all-OHC tournament team were Greeneview's Kyle Brown (87) and Mechanicsburg's Allan Sword (91). (Courtesy: http://www.springfieldnewssun.com)