The Lyons Township High School boys golf team, a perennial contender to win a state championship, opened the Class 3A playoffs in auspicious fashion last week. The Lions shot 296 to win the Hinsdale South Regional by six shots over two-time defending state champion/conference rival Hinsdale Central .
LTHS senior Jon Hudson was the medalist with a 69, while senior teammates Mike Caplice (74) and Matt Walsh (76) also played well. Freshman Patrick Akaniroj carded a 77 while senior Billy Spartz (82) and junior Jason Miller (87) rounded out the lineup.
Along with LTHS, Hinsdale Central (302) and Benet Academy (305) advance to sectional competition.
Hudson won the individual championship over Hinsdale Central’s Brendan O’Reilly at Prairie Bluff Golf Course by scoring a birdie on the first hole of a playoff. Last year, Hudson carded a 153 to tie Keenai Sampson of Collinsville for 19th place at the state finals. His older brother, Dan, shot a 148 as a LTHS senior last year to earn eighth place with two other golfers at state.
Riverside-Brookfield High School finished ninth out of the 10-team field with a score of 378. Aleks Penaherrera cared a team-best 88 for the Bulldogs. Peter Smith (92) and Mike Gruber (96) were the other top scorers for RBHS. Jack Robling shot a 102, Sam Abbatacola carded a 108 and Tim Kmet had a 116 for the Bulldogs, who finished the season with a 6-8 record including an 0-6 record in the Metro Suburban Conference.
After a 2-7 start to the season, RBHS showed improvement in the second half of the season under veteran coach Larry Rocco by winning four of five dual matches.
Four LTHS female golfers advance to sectional
Although the LTHS girls golf team won’t advance to sectional competition, the Lions will be well represented with four seniors who advance as individual qualifiers.
Melissa Marston carded a 90 as the Lions’ top scorer and Macy Tabachka shot a 93. Michele Siamis and Grace Baumel each recorded a 95 for LTHS which finished with a team score of 373.
Led by medalist Selina Zeng (76), Hinsdale Central won the title with a score of 316 followed by Naperville North (340) and Downers Grove North (362). All three teams move on to sectional play.
Riverside-Brookfield finished seventh (505) at the St. Ignatius Regional. Seniors Renee Kunkel, Alicia Heninger and Julia Roedel along with promising sophomore Cameron Shaw led the Bulldogs this season.
Oak Park and River Forest earned the St. Ignatius Regional title with a score of 365, edging cross-town rival Fenwick (373). The regional host Wolpack rounded out the advancing teams with a 401.
A pair of freshmen battled for the medalist title. Myah Jackson of Chicago Jones carded an 81 to edge Fenwick’s Stephanie Mroz who shot an 83.