Courier Sports Staff
---- — NEWTON, Kan. — Sand Creek Station was a place that produced a lot of great memories last year for the Indian Hills golf team thanks to the Warriors producing some pretty great golf on the central Kansas course.
Even with a thunderstorm that delayed play on Monday in the opening two rounds of the Iowa-Kansas Clash, it was more of the same for the fourth-ranked Warriors on the course where they won a regular season, district and national tournament title last spring. IHCC overcame a 90-minute delay and rolled to their best round yet at Sand Creek Station, following an opening-round 287 with a second-round 275 to open up a 19-shot margin over regional rival Iowa Western heading into today's final 18 holes in the final meet of the regular season.
"We've had a lot of great success on this course, but this is by far the lowest 18-hole total we've ever had out here," Indian Hills head golf coach Mike Hagen said of the Warriors' second round on Monday. "There is some familiarity there, but I think it has a lot to do with us maturing as a team. You're seeing a carryover from event to event. We finally closed out a meet last week, we had five good days of practice last week and it's all carried over into this event."
Former Oskaloosa star Mitch Tucker leads not only the Warriors, but all golfers in the clash with a 139 total. The Warriors sophomore was one of four IHCC golfers to fire a second round in the 60s with a four-under 68, putting Tucker a shot ahead of two players at five-under 139.
Four Indian Hills players are tied for fourth place individually at three-under par. Ben Ludlam, Conner Peck, Kevin Workman and William White all finished Monday at 141 with White firing a six-under second round 66 as the fourth-ranked Warriors will be looking to close out their second-straight win in style today.
"The message is go out and shoot the lowest 18-hole score in the field," Hagen said. "We want to be rolling going into the district tournament. There's no better way to do that than to shoot our best round."
At Sand Creek Station Golf Course
Team scoring — 1. Indian Hills 287-275-562, 2. Iowa Western 293-288-581, 3. Johnson County 288-295-583, 4. Dodge City 295-296-591, 5. Hutchinson 298-299-597, 6. Garden City 300-304-604, 7. Independence 317-313-630, 8. Coffeyville 316-317-633, 9. Kansas City (Kansas) 323-308-631, 10. Barton County 328-342-670, 11. Allen 333-331-664, 12. Colby 334-333-667.
Leader — Mitch Tucker (IHCC) 71-68-139.
Second Place — Michael O'Conner (Hutchinson) 70-70-140 and Mariano Rossi (Dodge City) 70-70-140.
IHCC individuals — Tucker 71-68-139, Ben Ludlum 69-72-141, Conner Peck 72-69-141, William White 75-66-141, Collin Pearson 76-77-153.
Other IHCC individuals — Kevin Workman 69-72-141.