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Boys' golf: West Central Area wins golf title

The West Central Area boys (back row) and girls (front row) both captued Section 5A-North golf championships Wednesday and will move on to the Section 5A finals. (Contribute)

The West Central Area boys' golf team won its second subsection title in the last three years behind a strong back nine from the team and a medalist round from Matt Wagner.

Wagner shot even-par 72 after shooting 36 on both the front and the back. He parred his last six holes on the front before bogeying his first two on the back. Wagner responded by birdying three of his final five holes to lead the Knights to a team score of 346.

"Great round of golf," head coach Kraig Hunter said of Wagner. "Matt is finally starting to play like he is capable of. I think the 1-under par round, which placed him third in Barnesville last week really got him going as of late."

West Central Area got three other scores in the low 90s to help them win the meet by 15 strokes over Osakis and Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa. Mike Engler posted a 90. Brad Westrom had a 91 and Calvin Anderson shot a 93 to round out the scoring for the Knights.

"Brad really gave us a boost with a nice round today," Hunter said. "Mike and Calvin were struggling early on the front nine, but both came back nice on the back nine. Some of these seniors can be proud to be a member of two subsection championship teams during their careers."

The Knights had to rally on the back to make it happen. Osakis led after nine holes with a 177 as WCA (178) and BBE (180) were well within striking distance. The Knights ran away on the back by shooting a 168.

"It was close and exciting to watch unfold," Hunter said.

Ashby's Mason Johnson and Osakis' Paul Hartmann both finished top five individually. Johnson shot an 84 to finish tied for second, while Hartmann finished with an 86.

Troy Asseln and Nathan Arens also qualified for the individual section tournament for Osakis. Asseln shot an 89 and Arens a 90, while Joey Garcia rounded out the Silverstreaks' four scorers with a 96. Osakis and BBE each shot a 346 but the Jaguars won the fifth-score tiebreaker to take second place.

West Central Area and the individuals who qualified will now advance to the section meet tomorrow, Thursday, in Benson.


TEAM RESULTS - 1. WCA - 346; 2. BBE - 361; 3. Osakis - 361; 4. Browerville - 374; 5. CGB - 378; 6. Ashby - 381; 7. Wheaton - 457

INDIVIDUAL MEDALISTS - 1. Matt Wagner (WCA) - 72; 2. Mason Johnson (Ashby) - 84; 3. Ryan Rickbeil (Browerville) - 84; 4. Paul Hartmann (Osakis) - 86; 5. T'mone Kliendel (CGB) - 87

WCA SCORES - Wagner - 72; Engler - 90; Westrom - 91; Anderson - 93; Hunter Pfingsten - 95; Kent Kjesbo - 105

OSAKIS SCORES - Hartmann - 86; Asseln - 89; Garcia - 96; Seth Strelow - 104; Arens - 90; Joey Kotek - 96