Brad Ficke called Cole Dillon into the Manhattan Country Club pro shop on Monday, right after he led the team to a win with a third-place 75.
Ficke wanted to award the freshman with his team golf bag, and Dillon was all smiles when he came out to messages of congratulations from teammates and family members.
“I was proud to give it to him,” Ficke said. “He is solid and poised and confident, and he will have a bright career at Manhattan and beyond.”
The Indians shot 312 as a team, beating Shawnee Heights’ second-place score of 318 and Seaman was third at 323. Shawnee Heights’ Ronnie McHenry took first with a score of 70.
Dillon’s 75 was just part of a solid day for the Indians, as Scott Woods took sixth with a 78 and David Woods was seventh at 78.
Joe Ballard shot 81, Pierson McAtee was at 83 and Adam Hagedorn shot 89. McAtee, also a freshman, opened the day slowly, and turned it around to nearly finish as one of the Indians’ top four scores.
“Pierson 4-putted his first green and had two other 3-putts in his first few holes,” Ficke said. “He is a very positive kid and he fought back, and that says a lot about his character.”
Ficke said the team felt it could have scored even better.
“Everybody knows that they could have played better, and that’s what we talked about,” he said. “Scoring 312 is competitive, I know Seaman was looking to play better and so was Shawnee Heights, so I tell my players to play even better.”
Ficke acknowledged after the tournament that Washburn Rural brought just one of their top six varsity players to the meet, making a Thursday trip to the Washburn Rural Invitational at Shawnee Country Club important for measuring against the rest of the Centennial League.
The Indians fielded another team of six members in the tournament, and that group finished with a team score of 334, just 11 strokes off third place.
Graham Grable led that group with an 81, while Drew Casper had 82 and Drew Kohlmeier had 83.
Nick Heldt scored an 88 and Dylan Gros had 99, while Donovan Meek rounded out the scores with 104.