Wonewoc-Center sophomore Tucker Needham went into sectionals with modest expectations. His performance there only solidified his belief that he can make the state tournament down the road.
Needham shot an 84, including a 41 on the front nine and a 43 on the back, to finish in a tie for 15th out of 72 golfers at the Division 3 New Glarus sectional meet Thursday, May 31 at Edelweiss Chalet Country Club in New Glarus. His score left him three strokes shy of a playoff to determine the final individual qualifier spot for the state meet.
Overall, Needham was pleased with how high he finished, even if he believes he left a few shots out on the course.
“I feel like I could’ve shot a lot better. I feel like I could’ve shot 80, 81 — so that would’ve put me in contention for a playoff spot,” Needham said. “But I’m happy overall with how I did. I wasn’t expecting to make it that high, so I’m pretty proud of myself.”
Needham was a member of the Wonewoc-Center/Hillsboro co-op, which just wrapped up its first season in existence. Having just finished his sophomore year, Needham believes there’s still plenty of room for growth in his game, and he thinks this year’s postseason experience will serve him well in the future in his quest for state qualification.
“I think my game is just going to get better from now on,” Needham said. “I think within the next two years I can make it to state, (especially) after having experience in sectionals and regionals. So I feel pretty confident.”
New Glarus junior Matt Hach won the individual sectional title at the meet by shooting a 78. Coulee Christian/Providence senior Joshua Johnson finished a shot behind in second with a 79. Abundant Life Christian/Madison Country Day junior Jack Rollins and Wisconsin Heights senior Anil Jergens each shot an 80 to tie for third, with Rollins winning a playoff to secure third-place medalist honors. Argyle/Pecatonica senior Mason Holcomb and Fennimore senior Cole Needham, Tucker’s cousin, tied for fifth with 81s.
Holcomb bested Needham in a playoff to earn fifth-place medalist honors and clinch the third and final individual qualifier spot for state. Johnson and Jergens were the two other individual qualifiers from the New Glarus sectional.
Abundant Life Christian/Madison Country Day shot 335 as a team to win the sectional title and advance to the state tournament. New Glarus finished one stroke behind in second at 336 to secure the other qualifying spot for state.