Times Sports Editor
The high school dust has nearly cleared, leaving high school golfers to enjoy the spotlight beginning with sectional play this afternoon.
Rolling Meadows Golf Course plays host to the Owen Valley Sectional for the sixth consecutive year and the Northview Knights are hoping to continue their recent success on the course.
The Knights have qualified for the regional as a team the last two seasons and three of the last four years. The Clay City Eels are hoping to reclaim some of the magic that had them qualify for the regional with a third-place finish in 2007. The top three teams and the lowest three individual scores from players that are not on a qualifying team, all advance to the Washington Regional held at Country Oaks Golf Course.
Northview looks to be in good shape this season as they return plenty of experience from the team that was a runner-up to Terre Haute South last year. The Knights scored a 309 to finish 10 strokes back of the Braves' 299.
Returning for the Knights is Drew Snyder, who shot a 72, which was good for second on the individual leaderboard. Kade Baker was also in the top-five with his round of 73. Both golfers return along with Daniel Eaglin, who carded an 83. Back in the mix after a summer away from high school golf, is Austin Akers, who shot an 87 in the 2007 sectional to help the Knights to a team championship.
The 2007 season has a wealth of fond memories for both the Knights and Eels as Northview won the championship after shooting 309 as a team with Baker shooting 73 and Eaglin carding an 83 for the Knights.
Rolling Meadows has already played host to one victorious Knights' effort this season as Northview claimed a dual match against the Patriots in April as Baker shot a 35, Snyder a 38, Eaglin a 41 and Ryan Turner a 36 in a nine-hole match.
The Knights will be seeking another championship as play begins at 10 a.m., but Terre Haute South comes in as the prohibitive favorite and are ranked 15th in the state.
The Braves also return three golfers from last year's sectional championship team as Thomas Goss claimed medalist honors with a round of 69. Zach Hosking added a 76 and Jackson Jarvis added a 78.
Not to be left out of the equation is a Linton squad that has some talent led by Jordan Bradbury, who shot a 77 last season. Chase Rhoten also returns with the Miners and carded an 89 last year.
Terre Haute North could be in the mix as well and are coming off a season-best round at its home course, Hulman Links.
Sophomore Ryan Sneddons shot a 1-over-par 37 with both Jeff Ackman and John Pollock each shooting a 38 in the victory.
Play begins at 10 a.m. at Rolling Meadows.