Mature Eckroat nabs second crown, leads Edmond North

By Ken MacLeod

EDMOND – Austin Eckroat won his first state title as a 5-foot-3, 120-pound baby-faced freshman with a killer golf swing.

He won his second as a 6-foot, 165-pound bearded senior, with the same killer swing, only much more powerful. He overwhelmed the 6,700-yard Golf Club of Edmond, shooting 66-68-70 to finish 6-under and two shots ahead of Carson Griggs of Sand Springs, who closed with a fine 68 to finish at 4-under 206.

Eckroat’s victory helped propel favorite Edmond North to a 13-shot win over rival Owasso. Edmond Memorial was third, Deer Creek fourth and Jenks earned fifth.

Eckroat had a four-shot lead on the tee box on the par-5 18th hole and seemed to salt the tournament away with a booming drive that cut the heart out of the uphill dogleg left, leaving himself only 205 yards for his second. His 4-iron, however, clipped a tree branch just slightly right of the green and ricocheted way right before stopping just a few inches short of an iron fence.

On his first attempt to chip the ball away from the fence, the club clanged off a bar. His second went a few yards and stopped just over the cart path right of the green. After taking a drop, he chipped on and two-putted for a double bogey, the same score he registered on that hole in the first round when his tee shot sailed right and out-of-bounds.

Other than that hole, the Oklahoma State signee had few difficulties on the course where he played frequently in middle school before becoming a member at Oak Tree Country Club. He offset the double bogey and two additional bogeys with four birdies. He drove it pin high on the par-4 12th, was over the green in two on the 608-yard par-5 ninth hole, and his length frequently left him short wedges on his approaches.

“My driver was really good today,” Eckroat said. “Winning this means a lot, especially because I played out here as a kid. And now the team is back on a streak. Two in a row counts as a streak.”

As a sophomore, Eckroat was part of the team that lost to Owasso after winning the previous 10 state championships. Owasso, for its part, has now finished third, first, second and second in the past four state championships.

With 15 career wins, Eckroat tied the Edmond North record held by Kevin Tway, who is currently on a tear on the PGA Tour. He bested Tway’s career scoring average of 72.11 in 43 events with his 71.65 average in 44 events. He now owns or is tied for 15 other school records and is likely to one day join North grads Tway and Robert Streb in the professional ranks if he can keep improving.

“He’s that kind of player,” said Edmond North coach Jeff Doherty, who has sent 28 players on to Division I programs in his 21 years as head coach. “I know some things have to break right, but he’s got the same kind of ability as Kevin and Robert. There’s nothing that he is weak in. He’s one of those kids you hate to see graduate.

“Austin won this his freshman year and I think he thought he was supposed to win it every year. That’s too much pressure. I told him this week to just go have fun.”

Also having fun for North was Brock Pohill, who started the day in second but closed with a 74 to finish third at 1-over 211. Laken Hinton was eighth at 219, while Blake Blaser closed with a 74 to shoot 227.

Owasso was led by Jared Strathe (68-73-71) who finished fourth at 212, and Aussie Enzbrenner, who finished seventh at 218 (73-69-76). On Tuesday the Rams also counted rounds of 73 by Noah Russell and Dakota Clark and 75 by Jacob Stoller.

“We actually got off to a really good start and might have closed the gap on North, but then we had a few holes where we gave some back and didn’t really make a run late,” Owasso coach Corey Burd said. “We played solid. We still shot a good round, under the pressure and the conditions with a lot of fans watching and college coaches here. I was proud of them.

“It was kind of the way it’s been all year, we were on their heels nipping at them, but North has a solid team.”

Strathe and Enzbrenner will return but Burd will need to find replacements at the other three spots.

Class 6A state tournament

At Golf Club of Edmond

Par 70

Tuesday

Final results

Team scores

1. Edmond North 282-284-290 — 856

2. Owasso 288-289-292 — 869

3. Edmond Memorial 291-291-298 — 880

4. Deer Creek 295-304-307 — 906

5. Jenks 317-300-300 — 917

6. Broken Arrow 324-300-308 — 932

7. Choctaw 314-312-319 — 945

8. Bixby 313-321-314 — 948

9. Norman North 319-308-321 — 948

10. Yukon 326-339-324 — 989

11. Sapulpa 329-326-335 — 990

12. Tulsa Union 352-323-318 — 993

 

Top individuals

204 — Austin Eckroat, Edmond North 66-68-70

206 — Carson Griggs, Sand Springs 67-71-68

211 — Brock Polhill, Edmond North 69-68-74

212 — Jared Strathe, Owasso 68-73-71

213 — Shayne Patel, Edmond Memorial 69-72-72

217 — Jack Glenn, Stillwater 77-74-72

218 — Aussie Enzbrenner, Owasso 73-69-76

219 — Laken Hinton, Edmond North 73-74-72

220 — Josh Lamar, Jenks 77-74-69; Cole Bardell, Deer Creek 71-75-74; Cooper Wilguess, Edmond Memorial 74-71-75

 

Others

Edmond North: Blake Blaser 79-74-74 — 227; Colter Baca 74-76-89 — 239

Owasso: Jacob Stoller 75-71-75 — 221; Dakota Clark 72-80-73 — 225; Noah Russell 77-76-73 — 226

Edmond Memorial: Austin Kang 74-73-76 — 223; Trent Lutze 75-75-75 — 225; Matt Armstrong 74-77-79 — 230

Deer Creek: Ty Avants 70-74-78 — 222; Rey Ferreryo 77-74-75 — 226; Colton Steele 77-81-81 — 239; Will Bardell 87-83-80 — 250

Jenks: Andrew Loseke 72-76-75 — 223; Will Ruley 86-73-79 — 238; Matt Mattoon 82-80-79 — 241; Dudley McElhaney 90-77-77 — 244

Broken Arrow: Harrison Gearhart 81-70-78 — 229; Isaac Bullen 83-73-76 — 232; Gabe Replogle 77-76-78 — 233; Austin Allison 83-83-76 — 242; Andrew Skinner 88-81-81 — 250

Choctaw: Payton Posada, Choctaw 74-73-74 — 221; Hunter Ulman 82-78-79 — 238; Lucas Laukhart 74-84-87 — 242; Jarod Nickell 88-79-80 — 247; Tyler Dunham 84-82-86 — 248

Bixby: Kyle Peterson 75-78-71 — 224; Addison Walton 71-84-77 — 232; Karsten Sessom 84-82-81 — 247; Michael Kemmerly 83-82-85 — 250; Derrick Pratt 85-79-92 — 256

Norman North: Mitchell Ross 74-77-74 — 225; Gage Gibson 80-74-87 — 241; Carter Crook 81-81-82 — 244; Charlie Jackson 84-91-78 — 253; Stinson Fuller 94-76-92 — 262

Yukon: Tyler Thompson 77-75-74 — 226; Lane Wallace 77-79-73 — 229; Ryan Apostolo 82-86-81 — 249; Zion Nave 90-99-96 — 265; Chase Burland 99-102-96 — 297

Sapulpa: Dan Reed 76-83-80 — 239; Clay Venable 79-76-86 — 241; Evan Linfoot 94-78-81 — 253; Mason McCormick 80-89-88 — 257; Josh Frazier 98-92-90 — 270

Tulsa Union: Sam Devore 86-87-73 — 240; Cole Bibler 90-79-78 — 247; Tyler Cox 86-79-82 — 247; Macdaniel Bonaobra 90-85-85 — 260; Andrew Brill 94-84-89 — 267

Edmond Santa Fe: Jakob Paugh 92-80-72 — 244

Moore: Nic Ziebro 81-83-82 — 246

Mustang: Bryce Vickery 81-79-77 — 237; Scotty Alexander 88-79-83 — 250

Norman: Tristan Florence 77-79-73 — 229

Putnam City: Christian McAllister 81-77-81 — 239

Putnam City North: Jaxon Northcutt 82-83-77 — 242; P.K. Hammons 86-87-77 — 250

Stillwater: Mitchell Bradshaw 83-76-80 — 239

Westmoore: Aaron Cavazos 83-77-81 — 241

 

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Ken MacLeod

Ken MacLeod

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