FULTON, Ill. — Despite a late double bogey on No. 8, Matt Dail outlasted Riverdale’s Jake Bussert to medal at Fulton’s home triangular boys golf meet Monday.
Dail, a senior and the Steamers’ No. 1 golfer, parred seven holes and birdied another, offsetting the late-round mishap to finish with a meet-low 38. A trifecta of Riverdale players — Bussert among them — took the next three spots, powering the Rams to a first-place team title with 165 points.
Fulton coach Mark Speir praised Dail’s work ethic, a major reason in his mind for why the senior has been so successful this season.
“For him, it’s all about the positives,” Speir said. “He takes what we work on in practice and works hard at it. He’s at a point now where it’s starting to pay off.
“Matt has really stepped up his game,” Speir added. “He did a lot of work last year to get to this year. He knew he was on target to be number one. The pressure on him was going to be high, and he took it well.”
Dustin Rowland rounded out the top-5 for the meet, putting two Steamers on the leaderboard. Rowland had a 47, tied with Orion’s Nate Jones. Lucas Wiebenga’s 48 and Justin Petersen’s 49 rounded out Fulton scorers. As a team, the Steamers tallied 182 points, finishing second.
Orion was third with 198.
Over the last four years, Fulton has rattled off a string of four consecutive conference championships. Spier’s 2013 squad returned only Dail among its top golfers.
“We’re probably a third-place team in our conference right now,” Speir said. “We realize what we need to do to get back to number one.”
Thunder fall to Le-Win
SAVANNA, Ill. — Cameron Ehlers took runner-up honors at the Palisades Golf Course on Monday, falling two strokes shy of Lena-Winslow’s Logan Moothart. Ehlers’ team — West Carroll — fell just shy, too. Despite all six Thunder golfers firing 47 or lower, the Panthers shot five rounds lower than 45 to take a 161-170 dual-meet edge.
Ehlers, a sophomore, started the day with three straight pars on Nos. 1-3, the only golfer to do so, but he was tripped up on No. 5 with a double bogey-6. Moothart, meanwhile, had a major momentum swing when he birdied the par-4 No. 8; Ehlers finished with another 6 on the same hole.
Rounding out the Thunder scores were Anthony Mendoza and Sean Keckler, who both shot 43s; Matt Ritchie with 45; Hayley Guilinger with 46; and Keegan Randecker’s 47.
Team standings — 1. Riverdale 165; 2. Fulton 182; 3. Orion 198.
Medalist — Matt Dail (Fulton) 38.
RIVERDALE — Jake Bussert 40, Bentley Sweet 41, Jake Tysma 42, Joe Ibarra 48, Tanner Reed 48.
FULTON — Dail 38, Dustin Rowland 47, Lucas Wiebenga 48, Justin Petersen 49, Brett Terrock 51, Jake Outzen 52.
ORION — Nate Jones 47, Clay Vanderheiden 49, Nick Sinole 49.
LENA-WINSLOW 161, WEST CARROLL 170
Medalist — Logan Moothart (LW) 37.
LENA-WINSLOW — Moothart 37, Quinn Sowle 40, Austin Heinrich 41, Kyle Jensen 43, Sean Cory 45, Brett Meadon 51.
WEST CARROLL — Cameron Ehlers 39, Sean Keckler 43, Anthony Mendoza 43, Matt Ritchie 45, Hayley Guilinger 46, Keegan Randecker 47.
Season outlooks Today's Herald includes season outlooks for the golf and volleyball teams at Fulton High School and the volleyball and soccer teams at Unity Christian High School. Along with the outlooks, find team photos for all four squads on Page 17.