KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Tanner Owen enjoyed his non-descript round — by his standards — at the Liberty Invitational on Monday, April 20.
The Park Hill South junior earned a top-five finish for the 11th time in his high school career, carding a 3-over 74 at Shoal Creek Golf Course. His round included 11 pars, three birdies, four bogeys and one double bogey that didn’t create much of a sense of excitement for the Division I-bound golfer.
“A lot of people say, ‘A boring round of golf is a good round of golf,’” Owen said. “Whenever you are hitting greens and making two-putts, it gets pretty boring, but you just have to stay in the mindset that you are playing good golf and move on. You just hit the fairway and hit the green.”
Owen finished third behind Wiliam Esrey (Pembroke Hill) and Rob Enright (Rockhurst), who both shot 1-over 72s. The Nebraska commit has never won a high school tournament and now has his eyes set on claiming the top spot for the first time in his career with opportunities left this season in the Suburban Conference Red Division tournament set for Monday April 27 at Drumm Farm Golf Club with Class 4 District 8 play set for Monday, May 4 at Moila Country Club in St. Joseph, Mo.
“Tanner’s playing really, really well right now,” Park Hill South coach Tracy Mangels said. “Obviously, he’s a very good golfer. He has his game conditioned to where he needs to be. He told me he feels like it’s mid-summer. That’s when he’s usually playing his best golf.”
Overall, Park Hill South tied for seventh in the final team standings with a 334 total. The Panthers were 28 behind Rockhurst, which topped the 21-team field.
Noah Pennell shot a 13-over 84, while Jake Carpenter (86) and Dillon Murray (90) rounded out Park Hill South’s score.
“I hope the kids use this experience,” Mangels said, “to be able to go out and grind it out in windy conditions, put up a number, do a little damage control. Pars are not going to be as easy to come by, but what you want to do is eliminate the big numbers. You’re pretty happy at the end of the day when that happens.”
Platte County found itself 14th in the team standings in a field filled with Class 4 schools. The Pirates shot a 352 for their lowest tournament finish this season with Adam Muehlebach and Matt Madill leading the way with 86s — good for a tie for 43rd place. Nick Bartelli 89 and Jordan Morris 91 rounded out the team total.
“It’s just another tournament for us,” Platte County coach Trevor Short said. “We didn’t play well. We played in tough conditions, just like everyone else. We couldn’t quite pull through with the good scores that we’re capable of. It’s good to get this type of round out of the way — hopefully end the high scores we had today and move on and get ready for the next two weeks.”
Park Hill finished two spots back in 16th with a 363. Kris Snodgrass carded an 84 to lead the Trojans.
Park Hill South 170, Liberty North 173, Staley 184
Owen earned medalist honors in a triangular match Wednesday, April 15 at The Deuce at the National in Parkville, Mo. The junior carded a 2-over 38 — the only golfer to break 40. Murray shot 43, Pennell 45 and Jason Cunningham carded a 44 to earn the Panthers a win.
Platte County 159, St. Pius X 203
Platte County coasted to an easy win on Thursday April 16 at Shiloh Springs Golf Course. Madill led the Pirates with a 5-over 39. Bartelli carded a 40 and Chase Beamer and Payton Boekout both tied with 41s.