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OKLAHOMA CITY â€” Poteau Pirates Golf Coach Mike Thomas was hoping to get at least a sixth-place, or higher, team finish in the 2012 Class 4A State Tournament, which took place Monday and Tuesday at Lake Hefner North Golf Course. Unfortunately, his and the Pirates' wish did not come true.
The Pirates ended up 11th out of 12 teams in the field with a three-round team score of 948. After 36 holes on Monday, the Pirates were in 10th place with a 636, but had a team score of 312 on Tuesday â€” which was the best 18-hole performance of the tournament for the Pirates.
â€śIt was the second round that hurt us,â€ť Thomas said. â€śWe shot a 314 in the first round and a 312 (Tuesday) in the third round, but that 322 in the second round hurt us. You normally get better in the second round from the first round, and we went backwards, but the weather conditions were not really good (on Monday). It was drizzling and windy, and the temperatures never got out of the 60s. However, our guys just didn't respond to it.â€ť
Unfortunately, other teams had similar improvements over the final 18 holes. Oklahoma City Heritage Hall won the state team title with a three-round score of 869, with Elk City in second (876) and Ada third (883) to be the only teams with three-round team score less than 900.
Tulsa Cascia Hall was fourth (906), followed by Tulsa Metro Christian (913), Clinton (913), Weatherford (913), Seminole (927), Fort Gibson (936) and Cushing (943).
The highest finisher for the Pirates was freshman Cody Shore, who finished in 25th place with a 73-78-77â€”228. He finished the first 36 holes in a tie for 17th on Monday at 151.
The state individual champion is Heritage Hall's Trent Mewbourn, who pretty much led start to finish as he shot a 66-68-73â€”207 to claim the top medalist honor.
As for other Pirates, Trey Wells, Poteau's only senior, actually moved up the individual ranks. After being tied for 58th at 81-83â€”164 after Monday's first 36 holes, the soon-to-be West Point cadet shot a state-high round of 74 to end up tied for 45th at 238.
â€śI was excited for him,â€ť Thomas said. â€śHe shot a three-under (on the back nine) in the final round, and not many golfers did that.â€ť
John Scott Sanders tied for 48th with a 239 with three-round score of 77-82-80.
Jarrett Lowrimore tied for 60th with a score of 85-79-81â€”245, while Connor Wheat was 70th (83-85-86â€”254).
With only Wells graduating, the other four Pirates will return next spring, which should make the Pirates be right there in the hunt in Class 4A boys state golf.
â€śLast year, we were 12th, and we didn't want to finish last this year,â€ť Thomas said. â€śWe wanted to finish higher, and next year we're not looking to just move up one more spot to 10th. We're going to be looking for a top-three finish.â€ť
Editor's Note â€” Look for a story about Cameron golfer Kody Whitehead at the Class 2A State Tournament in Thursday's edition.