Moeller wins Cincinnati East Division I sectional golf
October 2, 2012Cincinnati Moeller High School
By Michael Stainbrook
Having one sharpshooter in boys’ golf normally suffices during the regular season. Come tournament time, having a second is nice.
But Moeller showed Tuesday at the Cincinnati East Division I sectional that it had at least three.
Slow greens and calm conditions allowed for plenty of low scores at Glenview Golf Course, but the Crusaders emerged as the victors thanks to scores in the 70s from all five golfers.
"We have done that before this year, but it’s something that we haven’t done in a while,” Moeller coach Rick Bohne said. “It’s the first time that we’ve had them all playing like this, and that was nice.”
Moeller finished at the top of a crowded leaderboard that included 10 teams with scores of 340 or lower, meaning several low-shooting teams will not make the trek to Weatherwax Golf Course for next Thursday’s district tournament.
Of the 78 golfers, 25 finished with a score in the 70s. Officials could not recall any sectional tournament at Glenview that produced as many low scores as Tuesday’s field, and Moeller’s team score of 291 was only two strokes off the sectional record.
Soft, wet greens allowed for pinpoint approach shots and firm putts, and though rain dotted the course, winds remained calm for predictable tee shots.
Moeller senior Andrew Benza fired a 1-under-par 71 to tie for the top score of the day, and classmates Mason Eckley and Matthew Wetherill finished just behind him at 72. The Crusader trio accounted for three of the four lowest scores on the day.
Bohne said Eckley’s play often determines the flow of the match for the team. Eckley started well by notching birdies on the first three par-five holes, and his approach game was nearly lawless. He reached 16 of the 18 greens in regulation.
“I just hit the ball really well,” Eckley said. “It made for an easy day.”
The rest of the competition was not far behind Moeller, which is ranked third in the Enquirer area coaches’ poll. Third-ranked Mason finished at 302, and fourth-ranked Lakota East posted a 306. Sixth-ranked Loveland rounded out the qualifying teams with a 308, while Sycamore (315) and seventh-ranked Lakota West (316) narrowly missed the cut.
The four lowest scorers for the Tigers and Thunderhawks finished in the 70s.
“It’s nice to have four scores in the 70s,” Loveland coach Andy Fredette said. “It’s nice to know that I don’t necessarily have to have a player shooting really low to cover a player shooting really high.”
Four individuals not on qualifying teams also advanced to the district tournament. Lakota West senior Marshall Stretch (co-medalist with a 71), Amelia senior Jake Brinker (74), Anderson junior Ben Correll (75) and Sycamore senior Macalister Auciello (76) made the cut.
Cincinnati East Division I sectional tournament
Glenview Golf Course
(top four teams plus four individuals advance)
1. Moeller 291, 2. Mason 302, 3. Lakota East 306, 4. Loveland 308, 5. Sycamore 315, 6. Lakota West 316, 7. New Richland 324, 8. Anderson 329, 9. Kings 333, 10. Turpin 340, 11. Milford 346, 12. Glen Este 347, 13. Amelia 385, 14. Western Brown 390, 15. Goshen 476, 16. Little Miami 514.
Co-Medalists: Andrew Benza (Moe) and Marshall Stretch (LW) with 1-under 71. Others: Eckley (Moe) 72, Wetherill (Moe) 72.