By BRAD KEITH
STEPHENVILLE (April 16, 2015) — Stephenville shot its best and second best scores of the season at the Region I-4A championship at Shadow Hills Golf Course in Lubbock Wednesday and Thursday, tying Big Spring for fourth place in the team standings.
To head coach Alan Thorpe’s knowledge, fourth is the highest any Stephenville team has placed at a golf regional.
“We played our best two rounds of golf in the most high pressure event of the season. What more can you ask for?,” said Thorpe. “I’m proud of all these guys, and I’m glad we’ll have every one of them back next year.”
Stephenville followed Wednesday’s season-best score of 319 by carding a 321 on Thursday, equalling the 640 strokes taken by Big Spring. Reigning state champ Andrews cruised to the team title in 584 strokes and will be joined at state by Monahans (605) and Decatur (606). Big Spring improved eight strokes from 324 to 316 in round two to tie Stephenville. Graham, which defeated Stephenville for the District 6-4A title, was sixth at 641.
Colton Jeffress started hot, going two under over the first five holes, and ended up improving his score by three strokes in round two, posting 78 and 75 for a total of 153. Bunker Funderburgh turned in his second straight 80 for a score of 160, Clay Krause shot 82 and 81 for a total of 163 and Luke Weber went 79-85 to finish in 164 strokes. Jake Henriksen shot 96-86 to finish at 182. The team score is the sum of the top four individual scores in each round.
“We’re young. All five of these guys will be back, and we have some other good golfers in the program who are improving and will be looking to take these guys’ spots,” said Thorpe. “I hope this gives us a lot of momentum and shows the kids that we can compete with anybody and we do have the chance to get to state.”
The individual title was won by Drew Jones of Decatur. Listed as the No. 7 junior golfer in the nation in one ranking, Jones shot 68-66 for an impressive total of 10-under par 134.
“We were up against some of the best golfers in the state and one of the best in the nation,” said Thorpe, whose players competed alongside golfers from Andrews both days as well as Monahans and Decatur on Thursday. “We saw what it takes and showed how far we’ve come and how close we are.”