By STUART GROSKREUTZ
ST. PAUL – A fifth-place finish in Wednesday’s Suburban East Conference Tournament was enough to help the Stillwater boys’ golf team maintain its position in fourth place in the final league standings.
The Ponies posted a score of 321 at Keller Golf Course to finish just one point out of a tie for third place with White Bear Lake (320) and Woodbury (320). Although Stillwater stayed in place as far as the conference standings, Hastings turned in a sizzling 302 on Wednesday and Forest Lake was second at 315 as both teams vaulted past previous leader Mounds View to tie for the conference championship with 50.5 points. The Mustangs finished sixth in the conference tourney with a score of 323 to place third in the overall standings.
"It was an exciting day from a team perspective," Ponies coach John Scanlon said. "Forest Lake and Hastings overcame a large point deficit and overtook Mounds View. We held serve and remained in fourth place."
Anthony Johnson set the pace for Stillwater with a 78 on the venerable par-72 layout, which was four shots behind individual medalists Matt Radke and Jacob Cooper of Hastings and Trevor Thompson of Forest Lake, who each shot 74 – solid scores considering the windy conditions.
"Anthony has played well under challenging, windy conditions," Scanlon said. "He is a tough kid and it is always nice to have reliable seniors in the starting lineup."
Sammy Sicard and Lars Lillehei each added an 80 while Charley Clements contributed an 83 to complete the scoring for Stillwater. Sicard finished the season ranked fifth in the conference scoring list at 75.75 to easily earn All-SEC honors. Lillehei (80.25) and Clements (80.25) earned honorable mention all-conference honors.
"Sammy got off to a rough start, but battled it out to an 80," Scanlon said. "We had a decent day in 35-mile-per-hour winds."
Stillwater is scheduled to compete at the Section 4AAA tournament at Bunker Hills Golf Course on Tuesday.
1. Hastings 302; 2. Forest Lake 315; 3, tie, White Bear Lake 320 and Woodbury 320; 5. Stillwater 321; 6. Mounds View 323; 7. East Ridge 324; 8. Cretin-Derham Hall 325; 9. Roseville 329; 10. Park 338.
Anthony Johnson 78, Sammy Sicard 80, Lars Lillehei 80, Charley Clements 83, Bennett Anderson 85 and Jeff Carstens 86. Individual medalists: Matt Radke (Has) 74, Jacob Cooper (Has) 74 and Trevor Thompson (FL) 74.
Final SEC standings
1, tie, Forest Lake 50.5 and Hastings 50.5; 3. Mounds View 48.5; 4. Stillwater 35; 5. Cretin-Derham Hall 28; 6. East Ridge 27.5; 7. Woodbury 27; 8. Roseville 26.5; 9. White Bear Lake 18.5; 10. Park 3.