PAHRUMP – After the first round of the Division 3A Nevada State Boys Golf Champion, defending champion Spring Creek held a five-stroke lead.
The lead either needed to be six strokes or the Spartans needed to tally at least a 324 in the second round.
Spring Creek shot a 319 on Monday, dropping six strokes Tuesday to a 325 – Boulder City overcoming a 324 score in round one – the Eagles bouncing back with a 319 on day two, edging the Spartans by one stroke, 643 to 644.
Hometown Pahrump Valley placed third with a two-day total of 675.
Lowry took fourth place with mark of 698, edging fifth-place South Tahoe (699) by one stroke.
A lot of things run through a golfer’s mind during a round, makes it even tougher trying to think of where one shot may have gotten away after 18 holes.
Defending state champion Daniel Mahlke posted a one-over-par 73 in the first round, falling to a seven-over-par 79 on day two.
He tied for third place with a two-day score of 152, matching the number carded by Fallon’s Kelvin Cann (77, 75) and Boulder City’s Blake Schaper (75, 77).
On the par-5 15th hole, Mahlke’s drive wound up against a sprinkler and he was placed in a tough predicament – either try to hit naturally left handed against a tree or go with an off-side approach and hit right handed – choosing the latter.
He wound up with a triple bogey on the hole.
Western’s Jared Smith blew away the competition, showing his one-under 71 on the first day was no fluke, coming right back with another one-under 71 in the second round.
He finished the tournament two-under par with a two-day total of 142, beating second-place Boulder City golfer Jackson Wright’s card of 151 (79, 72) by nine strokes.
Spring Creek senior Mason Adams placed sixth with a two-day total of 160 on rounds of 79 and 81, trailing the three-way tie for third by eight strokes.
Mahlke and Adams each earned 1st-Team All-State honors for the Spartans.
Finishing three-strokes back of a 1st-Team All-State nod, Spring Creek junior Trey Sharp tied for seventh with a two-day total of 163.
Sharp shot a solid round for the Spartans, shaving five strokes from his first-round 84 and closing the tournament with a 79, serving as the only Spring Creek golfer who improved his total on the second day of the tourney.
He tied Mahlke for the team’s best score in the second round.
Truckee freshman Ethan Flynn earned a 2nd-Team All-State honor, tying for ninth place with a two-day total of 166 on matching 83s in the first and second rounds.
Spring Creek senior Blair Ingram rounded out the 2nd-Team All-State selections with a two-round card of 169, tying for 12th place, finishing with scores of 83 in the first round and 86 in the second.
Mahlke’s 79, Sharp’s 79, Adams’ 81 and Ingram’s 86 served as the four scores toward Spring Creek’s qualifying total of 325 for the second-consecutive day.
“We put up a pretty good score; 325 is right around our season average, but we had some bad holes today and took some tough bounces,” said Spring Creek coach Jeff Van Orman. “We had a great season and had a lot of high points. We have a lot of great kids on this team. Coaching them was a pleasure. We just didn’t quite have our best stuff today. Credit Boulder City, they did what they had to do when it mattered.”
Elko senior Cache Black, competing as an individual, placed 35th with a two-day total of 187.
He improved greatly from round one to the second day, shaving nine strokes from his 98 and closing the tournament with a second-round score of 89.
Spring Creek senior Brennan Moon’s rounds were consistent, posting a 99 in each outing, ranking 38th with a two-day total of 198.
The Spartans wound up needing to beat Boulder City by a full stroke, because if a tie would have occurred – the Eagles would have won the state title anyway – the criteria for ties coming down to the card of the fifth golfer for each team.
Dustin Landerman’s 92 and two-day total of 177 for Boulder City’s fifth card would have bested Moon’s 99 and 198 tournament score for Spring Creek’s fifth card.
Junior teammate Dyllan Fuchs’ second round did not get off to a good start and never got better, closing the day with a 125, paired with his first-round total of 99 for a two-day mark of 224 and 42nd place.
Congratulations to the Spartans for the 3A North regional championship and unbeaten streak in league play and their runner-up finish in the Division 3A Nevada State Boys Golf Championship.