Plain and simple, Lincolnwood’s regional championship win on Tuesday was a total team effort.
Playing on Oct. 6, at the Jacksonville Country Club, the Lancers didn’t have a player go out and shoot a round that would leave you breathless, but they did have a solid all-around performance that yielded their first regional crown since 2009.
Five of the six Lincolnwood players shot 86 or better on the day, the most of any by far. Second place North Mac would be the closest with three players in that range, two of whom shot 86 exactly and medalist Ryley Marko, who shot an even-par 72.
Lincolnwood’s best of the bunch was Braxton Schmedeke, who was steady as they come with a 7-over-par 79. Schmedeke shot a 2-over 38 on the front half of the course, with a birdie on the par-3 fourth hole, six pars, a bogey and a double bogey, then shot a 41 on the back half with another birdie, plus four more pars.
Devin Brown would also have two birdies on the day as he finished three strokes behind his teammate in a tie for eighth overall individually. Brown birdied number seven on the front nine, then capped off the back nine with another 1-under on hole 18, which finished off a five hole even-par stretch for the Lancer senior.
Michael Jones tied for tenth overall, one stroke behind Brown with an 83. Like Schmedeke and Brown, Jones also seemed determined to not let Tuesday be the end of his senior year of golf, shooting a 41 on the front nine (with a birdie on number four) and a 42 on the back half of the course).
While the senior trio led the way for the Lancers, the underclassmen played well too for Coach Verne Pinkston’s club. Nate Brockmeyer contributed the fourth scoring round with an 85 as he finished 14th overall, while Will Jenkins was 16th overall with an 86. Brockmeyer would finish the day with seven pars and nothing worse than a double bogey, while Jenkins had seven pars, a birdie and nothing worse than a triple bogey.
Michael Graham would be the Lancers’ sixth man and shot a 100 on the day to finish 40th. Graham shot a 44 on the front nine, but had a few hiccups on the back half of the course and settled for a 56 to end the day.
The victory didn’t just end a ten year title drought for the Lancers, but it also gave Coach Pinkston his first regional crown since taking over the program in 2012. Pinkston, who has the second most wins in the program’s history with 277, was given a celebratory water bottle shower from Jenkins and Schmedeke after receiving the championship plaque, the golf equivalent of dumping the Gatorade bucket on their victorious leader.
Whether more celebrations are in order will have to wait until Monday, Oct. 12, when the Lancers tee it up against players from the Cambridge, Illini Bluffs and Hamilton regionals at the Sherrard Sectional at Frye Lake Golf Course in Sherrard.
IHSA 1A Boys Golf
Jacksonville Country Club - Par 72
Team Results: 1. Lincolnwood-Morrisonville 329; 2. North Mac 332; 3. Auburn 343; 4. South County 359; 4. Triopia 359; 6. Bluffs 366; 7. Carlinville 371; 8. Pleasant Plains 375; 9. Jacksonville Routt 386; 10. Carrollton 464; 11. Northwestern 436.
Medalist: Ryley Marko (NM) 72.
Lincolnwood-Morrisonville (329) - Braxton Schmedeke 79; Devin Brown 82; Michael Jones 83; Nate Brockmeyer 85; Will Jenkins 86; Michael Graham 100.
North Mac (332) - Ryley Marko 72; Kannon Kirk 86; Matt Hendricks 86; Cole Hatalla 88, Carson Raynor 94, Tanner Wilson 96.
Advancing Individuals: 2. Tysyn Mast (Bluffs) 73; 3. Dain Richie (South County) 75); 4. Jadon Wheeler (Westfair Christian Academy) 77; 6. Kyle Abraham (Pleasant Plains) 80.