The Benton Tigers took the first step toward a fifth straight Division II golf state championship by winning the District 1 tournament Monday at Chennault Park in Monroe.
Benton’s Hayden White and Colton Ryan tied for individual medalist honors. Both shot even-par 72. David Cole, the 2014 state tournament medalist, was one shot back at 73. Alex Acurio rounded out the scoring with an 83.
Benton shot 300 as a team, 29 shots better than host Neville. Minden was third with a 342.
The Region I, Division II tournament is scheduled for next Tuesday at Links on the Bayou in Alexandria. The Division II state tournament is May 2-3 at The Wetlands in Lafayette.
The District 1, Division I tournament at The Club at Huntington Park was rained out Monday and has been rescheduled for Friday.
While a fifth straight state title isn’t out of the question for Benton, it will be a challenge, coach Tim Cram said. Three players — state tournament medalist Jacob Wyatt, Shane Cram and Corbin Cantrell — who contributed to all four titles graduated last year.
“It’s going to be a little harder this year,” Cram said. “We lost those three seniors. Last year we were so deep it didn’t matter. It was someone different every day. This year we’re three deep and we hope the No. 4 and 5 players can come through.”
— Russell Hedges, email@example.com