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High school boys golf: Seeking fifth straight state title, Skyline builds narrow 4-stroke lead at Day 1 of 5A state tournament

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Throughout the Region 6 boys golf season, Olympus and Skyline had some very close battles, with the Titans narrowly finishing with the better season average.

This week’s 5A state tournament is shaping up to be much of the same.

Skyline leads Olympus by four strokes following Day 1 of the state tournament at Oquirrh Hills Golf Course in Tooele on Monday, with Spanish Fork and Bonneville tied for third just four strokes behind Olympus.

The Eagles are seeking a fifth straight state championship, and looking to do so without one senior competing at state this week.

Skyline coach Kenny James said he likes the position his players are in after Day 1, and credits the weekly challenges of Region 6 as a factor for that success.

“I’m proud of the way the guys played. We missed some putts, but this is a hard putting course, and they’re hard pins too,” said James. “We’re battle tested, we’ve been fighting those same teams all year. Us and Olympus have been back and forth all year. We won two out of the last three going in, so we felt good about where we’re at.”

Skyline was the only team under par on Monday, shooting a 3-under 285. Olympus shot a 1-over 289.

There’s a log jam of teams all within striking distance of Skyline and Olympus if they have big days. Bonneville and Spanish Fork are tied with 293, while Orem, Woods Cross and Park City are tied with 294. East sits in eighth place with a 295.

Skyline sophomore Jackson Shelley led Skyline with a 5-under 67, and is the Day 1 leader by one stroke over Woods Cross senior Jon Howe.

Shelley made the turn at 1-under, but made four birdies on the back nine, including three straight at No. 13, 14 and 15 to take the lead.

“I feel pretty good about my round. I feel like I could’ve got a lot fewer strokes if I’d just putted better, but it’s alright,” said Shelley. “My driver was working well, and my approach shots were pretty decent. But my driver is what helped me the most. I drove three greens.”

He missed putts within 10 feet on No. 17 and 18 that could’ve extended his lead, but said nerves weren’t a factor all day on the course and expects to play calmly again during Tuesday’s final round.

Howe actually made more birdies than Shelley during Day 1, but along with his eight birdies he also had four bogeys.

The fact he’s just one stroke off the lead after scrambling the way he did give Howe plenty of optimism heading into the final round.

“I’m confident cause I know I had some mistakes, I had four bogeys, but I just know the course is getable, you’ve just got to put yourself in good positions,” said Howe, who said he finished with just 20 putts on the day.

Ten other golfers shot under par on Monday and could make a run at 5A medalist with a great day.

Orem’s Maddox Nielsen, Timpanogos’ Noah Moody and Olympus’ Mitt Harris are all tied for third at 3-under, with East’s Sean Lampropoulos, Box Elder’s Dyson Lish, Skyline’s Peter Kim and Salem Hills’ Cooper Nelson at 2-under.

Bonneville senior Ryder Hassell is tied for 10th at 1-under, but it was an adventurous round for sure. After making the turn after four-under following bogeys on No. 7, 8 and 9, he made five birdies on the back including four of the last five holes to put himself in a position to make a run at a medal.

5A state tournament

At Oquirrh Hills Golf Course

Day 1 Team scores

1. Skyline, 285

2. Olympus, 289

3. Spanish Fork, 293

3. Bonneville, 293

5. Park City, 294

5. Orem, 294

5. Woods Cross, 294

8. East, 295

Day 1 Individual results

  • 67 — Jackson Shelley, Skyline
  • 68 — Jon Howe, Woods Cross
  • 69 — Maddow Nielsen, Orem
  • 69 — Noah Moody, Timpanogos
  • 69 — Mitt Harris, Olympus
  • 70 — Sean Lampropoulos, East
  • 70 — Dyson Lish, Box Elder
  • 70 — Peter Kim, Skyline
  • 70 — Cooper Nelson, Salem Hills
  • 71 — Jaxon Smith, Woods Cross
  • 71 — Rawson Hardy, Park City
  • 71 — Ryder Hassell, Bonneville
  • 72 — Aiden Taylor, Park City
  • 72 — Carson Whitaker, Spanish Fork
  • 72 — Will Pedersen, Olympus
  • 72 — Parker Bunn, Bonneville
  • 73 — Austin Wetfall, Orem
  • 73 — Nason Jones, Highland
  • 73 — Preston Cheney, Jordan
  • 73 — Tryce Gordon, Salem Hills
  • 73 — Edyn Tueller, Box Elder
  • 73 — Jackson Rhees, Spanish Fork
  • 73 — Stockton Penman, Bountiful