Varsity Kansas

Kapaun wins City League golf title with group of 'grinders'

Kapaun holds off Carroll to win City League golf title

Coming into the final day of City League golf competition, Kapaun had to beat Carroll to win the title outright. The Crusaders did that, topping the Eagles 304-309 at Auburn Hills Golf Course on Wednesday.
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Coming into the final day of City League golf competition, Kapaun had to beat Carroll to win the title outright. The Crusaders did that, topping the Eagles 304-309 at Auburn Hills Golf Course on Wednesday.

Matthew Schrock had a rollercoaster day that ended as a City League high school golf champion.

On the second hole, he hit a ball out of bounds and couldn't find it. So he hit two more. Schrock was on pace to shoot a 10 on the par 4, but he found the first ball he hit at the last moment. Instead of a 10, he got out with a bogey, 5.

Then on the 18th hole, he hit another ball out of bounds. He found it, punched it onto the fairway and slashed a long iron shot from well over 200 yards away to within about 2 feet.

Schrock was not available after the round. He was taken home immediately because of heat exhaustion on the 92 degree day.

Kapaun coach Dan Harrison said his team is full of grinders like Schrock, and that is why the Crusaders won the 2018 City League championship Wednesday at Auburn Hill Golf Course.

Kapaun had to beat Carroll to win the title outright and did that, beating its rival 304-309. Junior Jack Baker was the main reason for that, finishing tied for a tournament-low 74 with East's Shamir Khan.

"Jack is super, super talented," Harrison said. "He can make any shot. He has a great imagination. He can see it and pull it off."

The Crusaders knew Carroll was going to be gunning for them, and after the first nine holes, a City League split seemed possible. Baker double bogeyed his second hole, and many of the Crusaders missed open looks with good lies.

They turned it on in the second half, Baker said.

"We just hit the smart shots," he said. "We kept it in play and didn't get too aggressive."

Kapaun's depth showed Wednesday. Harrison said each player shot at his season average or better, which showed poise out of the young group.

Five of the top 10 finishers wore Kapaun colors, and no Crusader shot worse than 80.

With a seemingly murky Class 5A field this year, Harrison said their depth and "boring golf" mindset could bring big dividends in a couple of weeks.

"You don't win championships by making more birdies," he said. "You win championships by making less mistakes. ... Fairway, middle of the green, two putt."

The Crusaders start their regional tournament in Salina on Monday, where Andover is expected to be the biggest competition. But the Trojans will be without their ace, Andrew Sokolosky, who has been out with a hand injury the the past couple of weeks.

Cooper Steiner said the group's mental strength has been huge this season to push through the final few holes and finish how they started. Harrison said with that mentality, team chemistry, too, will be the key to keep the momentum rolling.

"They pull for each other," he said. "It's a lot easier to grind it out when you know you got guys behind you who have your back."

To see the full City League results, click here.

To see the full regional assignments, click here.

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