Grosse Pointe South won the Division 1 boys state golf finals Saturday at The Meadows at Grand Valley State University. South shot 22-over-par as a team over two rounds, winning by 19 and 21 strokes over second- and third-place Rockford and Birmingham Seaholm, respectively.
South's win avenged two consecutive second-place finishes in the state finals.
"Finishing second was enough one year in a row, but what I really think it did was cement that attitude of the players that they were going to spend that extra time, do that extra work, practice outside of practice, and push themselves to that level of excellence," South coach Robert McIntyre said.
"It's a heck of an accomplishment. It's a pretty rare feeling, because the team really came together."
South was led by the tournament’s top individual golfer, senior Patrick Sullivan, who had eight birdies and finished 1-under-par for the weekend. Sullivan, a Michigan commit, shot a 5-under-par 37 on the front nine in the first round.
"Patrick is so consistent, very level-headed, very confident," McIntyre said. "He exudes to the rest of the team that leadership capacity that he has."
No moment was more indicative of Sullivan's confidence than a flop shot on the first playoff hole with Northville's Jimmy Dales to decide the outright individual champion. Fifteen yards off the green, Sullivan sent his shot straight in the air and landed it in a 3-foot pocket that would allow him a one-putt opportunity.
"That flop shot was of the quality as if it was in a PGA event," McIntyre said. "I would have and never will have the confidence or ability to even think about this."
Sullivan won the individual contest on the second playoff hole.
Wisconsin commit Coalter Smith was 4 over, good enough to tie for the third-best individual score, and Sullivan's brother, Tommy Sullivan, shot 8 over for South. Both Smith and Tommy Sullivan were finalists in the U.S. Golf Assocation (USGA) Drive, Chip and Putt competition at Augusta in April. Evan Theros was 11 over.
"We had two Division 1 Big Ten athletes at good golf schools," McIntyre said. "When I have a player playing one like Patrick and a player playing two like Coalter, it really stabilizes the mood for the entire team."
Dales’ Northville teammate, Abhi Alluri, tied for third individually with Smith and Utica Ford’s Owen Tucci.
Despite strong second rounds from Seaholm’s Henry Scavone and Jack Muir, who both shot even Saturday, Rockford held onto second place thanks to the steady hands of Daniel Froumis and Kevin Healy, who both shot 1-over-par. Healy’s total 146 was the second-best score of the tournament.
Lake Orion’s TJ Hirschfield tied with Patrick Sullivan for Friday’s best score with 71.
"He was just hitting every shot the way he wanted to," Lake Orion coach Monty Gallaher said. "He was playing with super high-level confidence, and just was able to visualize what he wanted to do."
Lake Orion fell to eighth place on day two, shooting 38-over-par to fall behind Birmingham Brother Rice.
Reigning Division 1 champions Catholic Central finished fifth. Kyle Sabo shot a hole-in-one on the thirteenth hole of the first round and Andrew Lack finished with the third-best score of the second round, shooting 72.
Hartland’s Mitchell Cotton, Berkley’s Jake Radom, and Portage Central’s Will Anderson rounded out the top ten individual finishers, each shooting 150.
Flint Powers defeated Forest Hills Northern by three total strokes at Bedford Valley Golf Course in Battle Creek.
Powers leapfrogged to first from its fourth-place position after the first round. Grant Tucker was even, Matt Knight was 1 over, and Zack Hopkins was 2 over for Powers in the second round.
Pontiac Notre Dame fell to sixth place after sitting atop the leaderboard after Friday's end. Brockton English shot 1 over for Notre Dame in the first round.
Hanover-Horton defeated Big Rapids on the tiebreaking procedure after the schools tied, each tallying a score of 651, shooting reciprocal rounds of 321 and 330 on Friday and Saturday, respectively, at Forest Akers West in East Lansing.
The championship was awarded to Hanover-Horton for its best fifth score, a 182 total from Kyler Rod. Pierce Morrissey of Big Rapids was top individual, shooting a 70-77—147.
Grosse Ile finished third: Jack Carter shot 166 and Evan Lemerand and Blake Petterle each shot 167. Anderson Ryan of Grand Rapids West Catholic had the best second round, shooting a 2-over-par 74.
Grand Rapids NorthPointe Christian won by 33 strokes over Clarkston Everest Collegiate at Forest Akers East in East Lansing.
GRNC’s Erik Fahlen was top individual. He took 71 strokes on Friday and just 67 Saturday.
Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett finished fifth behind scores from Mason Campau, Colin Degnore Nathan Alcantara and Spencer Lukas that ranged between 160-162.