Alleman boys golf coach Gene Elsner’s glum look said it all. A second Western Big Six title in the school’s history did not materialize Tuesday at Oakwood Country Club.
Alleman and Quincy had split in head-to-head competition this season with the Blue Devils taking the most recent one Saturday at Bunker Links at Galesburg by nine strokes.
So, it was not a total surprise when the Blue Devils came in with a 312, three shots better than the Pioneers, to win the conference title for the second straight season. It was also the Blue Devils’ 24th title in the 47 years of the Big Six tourney.
Quincy played a practice round at Oakwood on Friday, and it definitely helped, said Quincy senior T.J. Wensing, whose 74 won medalist honors.
“We actually played from the longer tees (Friday),” Wensing said. “So coming into today, I was thinking I need a long and straight driver. We had a shorter tee box today. A longer driver definitely helped for sure.
“It means quite a bit (to win the Big Six),” Wensing added. “There’s quite a bit of history through high school golf. You could see all the players’ names who won and which teams won. So it means a lot to every high school golfer who has been in this area.”
Alleman was led by junior Ryan Rochholz’s 76, good enough to tie for second with Quincy’s Parker Campbell and Galesburg’s Justin Endthoff. Alleman senior Hunter Love tied for fifth with Quincy’s Jimmie Patterson, with both shooting 77.
“I struggled a little bit,” said Rochholz. “I didn’t make any great putts. I usually putt pretty well. As a team, we played average. We didn’t play well enough to win. Quincy played well enough to win. That’s what happened.”
“Our 315 is maybe a little disappointing for us with where we have been playing the last couple of weeks,” Elsner said. “But that’s golf. Sometimes, everything works for you and sometimes nothing works for you.”
Quincy made it a sweep by winning the girls title, finishing 88 strokes ahead of second-place Moline. Medalist honors went to Galesburg’s Kirsten Osborn, who shot a 75. However the Streaks only had three golfers play with one out with an illness and another with an injury.
The Streaks’ Maitlyn Sanders not only shot an 80, but aced the 132-yard 14th hole with an 8-iron.
“The wind was in our face,” Sanders said, recalling her shot. “It was curving towards the hole and then it hit the green. We were kind of telling it to slow down because after the hole, (the green) just kind of falls off.”
It’s worth noting Sanders nearly eagled the previous hole.
And when she saw her first hole-in-one go in the cup? “I was speechless,” she said. “I just stood there, then I cried.”
Alleman's Megan Tanghe led local finishers with an 88.