Wednesday’s CIML Conference meet at Jester Park served as a tune-up for both the Ankeny and Ankeny Centennial boys’ golf teams.
The Hawks and Jaguars are both hoping to peak at Monday’s district meets.
Sixth-ranked Ankeny placed third in the conference meet with a 300 total. The Hawks had placed eighth at last year’s meet.
“I was happy with a third-place finish,” said Ankeny coach Mike Weddingfeld. “To be honest, the boys had not played at Jester since last year. We didn’t have any meets there this season, and we have been focusing on districts at Fort Dodge so there was no time to get over there for a practice round.”
No. 13 Centennial, meanwhile, finished eighth in the nine-team field. The Jaguars shot a 312.
“We have been a team that has been able to be scrappy and get the most we possibly could out of our rounds when we didn’t have our stuff,” said Centennial coach Andrew Reedy. “Today some guys didn’t have their stuff and couldn’t find a way to get it in the hole. We will be back at it (Thursday) working to sharpen up the parts of our games that allow us to get everything we can out of our rounds. I keep telling the guys that Monday is when we want to be playing our best anyway.”
No. 1 Johnston shot a 292 to defend its league title. No. 4 Dowling Catholic was the runner-up with a 296.
Ankeny finished one stroke ahead of No. 5 Valley and four shots ahead of No. 7 Southeast Polk.
“(Jester) is Johnston’s home course even though Dowling hosted so I figured (the Dragons) would go low and then Dowling posted a solid score as well so we were happy with a third-place finish,” Weddingfeld said. “It was nice to edge out Valley as they are in our district, and it was also nice to beat Southeast Polk as they have had our number several times this year.”
Krishiv Gupta of Johnston and Braeden Nelson of Valley each fired a 2-under-par 70 to lead the field of 54 players. Gupta earned medalist honors on a cardoff.
Drew Hensen placed fifth with a 72 to lead Ankeny. He made four birdies on the day.
“I had some trouble getting off the tee and a few bad putts,” said Hensen. “Given the way I drove the ball and putted, I was happy with how I scored.”
Hensen was joined on the all-conference first team by Centennial’s Charlie Morrissey, who finished seventh with a 73.
“Charlie has been so good for us this season,” Reedy said. “He is a kid that worked really hard at his game all summer and has been very coachable, just a joy to have on your team. I watched him play a lot today, and he could have easily been three to five shots better if he could have gotten some putts to drop. He hit great shots and rolled good putts–just not much dropped for him.”
Jacob Adams placed 12th for the Hawks with a 75. He earned second-team all-conference honors.
Ankeny’s Kyler Crimmins shot a 76, and Evan Hodapp had a 77. They placed 17th and 20th, respectively.
Crimmins and Hodapp were joined on the all-conference third team by Centennial’s Nathan Boehlert, who placed 24th with a 78.
“Nathan had a tough start and is one of the guys that didn’t have his best stuff,” Reedy said. “I am actually pretty happy with the number he was able to post given the struggles he faced with his game.”
Ankeny’s Duncan Beelner also carded a 78. Caden Weddingfeld added an 83 for the Hawks, who will play in a Class 4A district meet on Monday at the Fort Dodge Country Club.
“I would say we had a good showing today, and we will put our focus back to next Monday and districts,” coach Weddingfeld said.
Tiernan Logan shot a 79 for the Jaguars. Tate Logan and Zach Hoffman each had an 82, and Jackson Lewis finished with an 83.
“One thing I don’t have to worry about with this team is complacency or not working,” Reedy said. “I know the guys were not happy with their rounds. I can almost guarantee that they all went straight to a range or a practice green to figure stuff out. It matters to them and they are still 100 percent in on believing they can reach their goals.”
Centennial will host a district meet on Monday at Briarwood Golf Club. Sophomore McCoy Miller could rejoin the Jaguars’ lineup after shooting a 73 in the junior varsity meet on Wednesday.
“He has been really good lately and has forced me to make some decisions about the lineup,” Reedy said. “I am really proud of how he has responded to adversity this season!”