Bartlett wins team title at ElginElgin's Derek Strohmaier tees off on the eleventh hole during the Elgin Country Club boys golf invitational at Elgin Country Club in Elgin, Ill., on Tuesday, September 6, 2011.
| Andrew A. Nelles~For Sun-Times Media |
Updated: September 6, 2011 9:48PM
Considering how difficult Elgin Country Club can play on a calm day, the 322 Bartlett shot there Tuesday to come away with the Elgin Country Club Invitational championship trophy on a windy, cool day almost stunned Hawks coach Tom Boyle.
Meanwhile, the 4-under-par 68 round sophomore Burlington Central golfer Matt Weber shot stunned virtually everyone at the venerable track. Not that he isn’t good, but in that wind?
“I got off to a really good start, 6 under through 12 holes, and gave back a couple at the end on the back nine, but I played really good today,” Weber said.
Weber birdied holes 9 through 12, had six birdies in all and shot 32-36 to win the title easily by seven shots over St. Edward’s Mike Holevas and South Elgin’s Xavier Owens.
“I was happy to shoot my personal best here and win this tournament because I play this course a lot,” Weber said.
In fact, Weber played it several times over the Labor Day weekend to get ready for the tourney.
The wind and lightning-quick greens left some golfers in the tourney taking nearly as many shots for nine holes as Weber took for 18.
“It was windy on the weekend, the exact same kind of wind, so I knew what it was going to be like coming into it,” he said.
Weber, who honed his game over the summer in regional American Junior Golf Association tournaments, caught fire with a birdie at the par-4 358-yard second, added another birdie at the tougher 403-yard par-4 fifth, and then started his four-birdie streak at the par-3 ninth.
“Matt played really well,” said Holevas, who also played several stops on the AJGA tour. “My ball striking was not great, but a 75 was not bad with the way the course was playing. I’m real familiar with Matt’s game and that 68 was very good.”
Bartlett’s Ryan Wolfe led his team to the team championship with a 5-over 77, good for a fourth-place individual finish. But the decisive score may have been turned in by fifth man Chris Dungey. He shot the team’s second-lowest score with an 80 on a day when only six players in the 70-man, 14-team field shot better. As a result of the 80, the Hawks were able to throw out an 86 and they beat South Elgin (328) by six shots.
“Chris Dungey, he is around a 90 golfer for us,” Boyle said. “He is our fifth man, a sophomore we’ve been trying to groom a little bit because we think he has potential.
“He came through and shined today. What a great score. You can use an 80 with conditions brutal like today.”
The other Bartlett scores were an 82 from senior Ryan Starks and 83 from senior Colin Wadelin.
“We’ve been struggling a lot this year, especially with our putters,” said Boyle, who described his team’s performance as “coming out of nowhere.”
“We were down by an average of 10 putts per man today,” he added. “The highest we had was 31 putts. Last week, Ryan Wolfe shot a 74 with 41 putts. So our putters really came around.”
Besides the 75 from Owens, South Elgin had an 82 from Ryan Ford, 83 from Colton Kubovy and 88 by Deven Meredith.
“The scores today were kind of high, so I didn’t realize at first we got second,” Storm coach Jay Bartholomew said after his team won its third invitational trophy in school history. “That score is good for us this year. Xavier has done better this year — a 69 at the Highlands and 71 at Mill Creek — but that was solid for him with this wind.”
Geneva took third with 336 led by Colin Lillibridge’s 78, the fifth-best score on the day.
St. Charles East (342) took fourth, led by 84s from Sean Lechner and Max Kelly. Dundee-Crown had an 81 from Joe Aschacher to place fifth as a team at 347. St. Edward (348) took sixth, with Dan Winters shooting 79 to back up Holevas’ 75.
The rest of the field was Jacobs seventh (350), Burlington Central eighth (353), Hampshire ninth (365), Larkin 10th (384), Streamwood 11th (396), Elgin Academy 12th (397), Westminster 13th (408) and Elgin 14th (430).