TAYLORSVILLE — Crimson Cliffs’ senior Luke Schone admits he was a bit nervous when he arrived at Meadow Brook Golf Course on Thursday morning.
The Day 1 leader of the 4A state tournament by one stroke, Schone found himself in unfamiliar territory when he arrived at the course. Success at state wasn’t anything new with top five finishes each of his first three years, but he’d never been the leader.
“It feels really good just because over the years, I know how bad it feels to lose so close, and just knowing it was my last year.” Crimson Cliffs’ senior Luke Schone
After three years of doing the chasing, suddenly Schone was the hunted.
Ultimately, it was one of his nervy wedges that settled him down.
Schone stuck his wedge on the par 4 No. 1 to within 6 inches, with the tap-in birdie settling him down quickly as he backed up his Day 1 67 with a 68 on Thursday to claim 4A medalist honors with a three-stroke win over Stansbury’s Braydon Griffith.
“It feels really good just because over the years, I know how bad it feels to lose so close, and just knowing it was my last year,” said Schone.
The senior made five birdies and one bogey, including a birdie on the par 5 No. 18 when he continued to play aggressive. Laying up was never an option with a two-stroke lead, and neither was hitting to the middle of the green with the pin tucked back right.
“My driver is my strength, so I just stuck to it and hit driver all day,” said Schone.
His yardage coming in was playing 175, and he attacked the pin, with his shot coming up in the short cut behind the green.
He putted to within a foot and tapped in for birdie, finally securing the elusive individual title for the Schone family. His two older brothers and older sister always did well at state during their days playing at Pine View High School, but he’s the first to break through with the win.
Griffith was about four holes ahead of Schone on the course, and late in the afternoon they each sat at 7-under.
The difference was the back nine though as Griffith played it even and Schone in 2-under.
Crimson Cliffs freshman Boston Bracken finished third at 5-under, with teammate Zach Felts at 2-under and Dixie’s Jax McMurdie at 1-under. They were the only five golfers to finish under par.
With three golfers finishing under par, Crimson Cliffs ran away with its second straight team title, posting a two-day total of 564, followed by Desert Hills in second with a 609 and Ridgeline in third with a 613.
Last year Crimson Cliffs won with a 576 at state, but bettered that score by 12 strokes this year.
“Pretty special team. Last year’s team was pretty good, and they set the bar high and these guys outplayed last year’s team every single match,” said Crimson Cliffs coach Todd Meyer.
Even though Bracken finished with a better Region 9 average than Schone by four strokes, Meyer said he noticed Schone’s focus really improve over the past couple weeks which made a big difference at state.
4A state tournament
At Meadow Brook Golf Course
1. Crimson Cliffs, 564; 2. Desert Hills, 609; 3. Ridgeline, 613; 4 (tie). Green Canyon, Pine View, 621; 6. Cedar Valley, 627; 7. Sky View, 631; 8. Bear River, 634.
135 — Luke Schone, Crimson Cliffs
138 — Braydon Griffith, Stansbury
139 — Boston Bracken, Crimson Cliffs, 139
142 — Zach Felts, Crimson Cliffs
143 — Jax McMurdie, Dixie
146 — Beckham Johansen, Ridgeline; Michael Stirland, Hurricane
147 — Boston Dixon, Desert Hills
148 — Cruz Kirchhausen, Crimson Cliffs
149 — Tristan McKinney, Cedar Valley; Braden Alder, Sky View
150 — Landon Dunn, Cedar Valley; Merick Johnson, Desert Hills; Brock Roundy, Pine View
151 — Zach Skinner, Ridgeline
152 — Haiden King, Crimson Cliffs; Hayden Howell, Sky View; Jarett Giles, Bear River
154 — Kamon Anderson, Uintah