Pioneers six strokes better than Irish

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WALLA WALLA — The McLoughlin High School golf team finished six strokes better than DeSales in the third round of the Blue Mountain Cup at Veterans Memorial Golf Course on Tuesday.

Mac-Hi, which tied the Irish at Wine Valley in the opening round and lost by five strokes at Milton-Freewater in the second round, now holds a one-stroke lead heading into the fourth and final match on Thursday at the Walla Walla Country Club.

“It’s a great rivalry and that was the idea behind this,” DeSales coach Lon Olson said. “Anytime you can be competitive, it helps your game.”

Mac-Hi’s Andrew Kain took medalist honors, as he fired a 2-over-38. Kain also carded an eagle on hole nine, which secured the individual win. Behind him, DeSales’ Scott Kimball and Mac-Hi’s Sterling Sandburg each fired a 42 to tie for second.

DeSales’ Emily Baumgart, who played alongside Kimball from the white tees, fired a 3-over-39 to take medalist honors on the girls side.

“The weather was fine,” Olson said. “It was good golfing weather. They’re still getting the course in shape. I think it’s a testament to the difficulty Veterans has.”

Steven Xiao finished two strokes behind Kimball, as he fired a 44. Jerod Konen followed Xiao with a 44 and Dan Schaefer fired a 46 to round out the Irish card.

For Mac-Hi, Evan Kain carded a 45 and Riley Chester and Rain Wheeler both finished with 46s.

Walla Walla Valley Academy also sent a boys team, which finished third with a team score of 258. Their top finisher was Dylan Trapani, who finished with a 53.

Olson said the tournament is a great tune-up for the regular season.

“It’ll be really good going into the regular season after spring break,” he said.

Alongside Baumgart, DeSales’ Jane Conley finished with a 63, Alicia Haider fired a 67 and Elizabeth Ruthven carded a 74.

The Blue Mountain Cup ends with a match at the Walla Walla Country Club on Thursday at 3 p.m.

Walla Walla and DeSales High Schools are also co-hosting a fundraiser at the Walla Walla Country Club this Friday.

The tournament is a five-person scramble, including one student, and is a shotgun start at 1 p.m. All proceeds go to DeSales and Wa-Hi.

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