Manhattan High’s boys golf team is state-bound.
The Indians finished third in a regional at Wamego Country Club Monday, combining to shoot a 337 to clinch a spot in the Class 6A state tournament next week.
Cody Begnoche led the way for MHS with an 80, placing seventh. Teammate Casey Gritton carded an 82, then won a playoff for ninth place.
Mitch Munsen shot an 86, while Josh Priddle and Grant Snowden scored 89s.
Washburn Rural, which Manhattan High head coach Brad Ficke called the regional’s “clear favorite,” lived up to that billing. The Junior Blues won the event by 22 strokes, finishing at 305, well ahead of runner-up Lawrence Free State (324). Manhattan came in at 337, followed by Hutchinson (354) and Leavenworth (460).
Ficke, while pleased with the result, felt the Indians left some shots on the course.
“I feel like we were capable of a 320, which would have won second,” he said, “but the combination of a tough course and some missed opportunities led to higher scores.”
Heading into next week’s state tournament, which will be contested Monday at Sand Creek Station Golf Course in Newton, Ficke said MHS only has played to its potential, “once, maybe twice” the whole season.
“We’re planning to finish with a strong week of practice and give our best effort on Monday,” he said. “I’m hopeful these guys can play the way I know they can play. Mental toughness and confidence will be the focus this week.”