McCracken, Reinland lead Warrior men to win
SALT LAKE, Utah – Connor McCracken defeated teammate Drew Reinland on the first playoff hole to win individual honors and the two helped the Lewis-Clark State College men’s golf team to the title in the first of three Frontier Conference regular season tournaments.
The Warriors won the 54-hole event, played at Mountain Dell Golf Course, with a team score of 884, 25 shots ahead of Rocky Mountain’s 909. Carroll College is third at 917.
On the women’s side, LCSC wound up third despite an unbelievable round from redshirt freshman Idah Whisenant, who fired a personal best 1-over-par 73. The Warriors finished with a 1,035 team score, 50 shots behind winner Westminster.
McCracken, the two-time Frontier Conference Player of the year, shot a final round of 74 while Reinland, a freshman from Walla Walla, carded the best score on Tuesday with a 70. That left both golfers tied at 219 and forced a playoff to decide the individual winner. On the first playoff hole, McCracken, a senior from Eagle, Idaho, had a par, while Reinland had a bogey.
“That was nice to see us have the two top golfers battle it out,” LCSC coach Paul Thompson said. “And it’s great to win the first tournament by 25 strokes.”
The conference has three tournaments – two in the fall and one in the spring – and uses the combined team score to determine the regular season champion. The second tournament is Sept. 27-28 at Great Falls.
The Warriors shot a team score of 290 on Tuesday, which was the best score of the day. Jason Molner and Tyler Johnson both shots 73s, while Kyler Gable had a 76.
On the women’s side, Whisenant was playing in her first varsity tournament and had rounds of 98 and 90 on Monday. The Lewiston product then had an eagle and a birdie to stand 3-under after three holes during Tuesday’s round and kept up the solid play to easily set her personal best.
“Wow,” Thompson said. “She played absolutely fantastic.”
Whisenant’s round was the best of the day and tied for the top score among the women golfers in all three rounds.
Although LCSC improved its team score from Monday’s two rounds, it couldn’t make up ground on the league surprise Westminster, which had a 985 tem score, or defending champion Rocky Mountain, which finished second at 999.
The Warrior squad, which features two sophomores and two freshmen, was led by freshman Brooke Dagner’s 254 total, while senior Alana Norris had a 259.
Team scores - 1, LCSC 290-884. 2, Rocky Mountain 303-909. 3, Carroll 301-917. 4, Westminster 295-918. 5, Great Falls 331-1001. 6, Montana Tech 329-1007. Montana Western didn’t field a complete team and Montana State-Northern doesn't have men's golf.
LCSC - Connor McCracken 75-70-74-219, Drew Reinland 73-76-70-219, Jason Molner 78-72-73-223, Tyler Johnson 81-70-73-224, Kyler Gable 81-75-76-232.
Other LCSC scores - Kyler Nilsson 73-82-77-232, James Rooney 77-85-78-240.
Team scores - 1, Westminster 335-985. 2, Rocky Mountain 335-999. 3, Lewis-Clark State 338-1035.
LCSC - Brooke Dagner 82-84-88-254, Alana Norris 89-84-86-259, Idah Whisenant 98-90-73-261, Shanna Herman 92-87-91-270, Kelsey Haycock 89-95-92-276.
Other LCSC scores - Jennifer Sorensen 92-93-86-271, Jordan Knapp 94-92-91-277, Kelsey Dutton 101-98-87-286.