ANACONDA — With the unpredictability of the fall high school golf season amid a pandemic, Montana's top players are seeking out any competition they can find to stay sharp.
Fortunately for the Treasure State's most dedicated, a unique opportunity came to Old Works this past weekend in the inaugural Future Champions Golf National Tour Montana Championship. Corvallis junior Macee Greenwood took full advantage by edging out Kalispell Flathead senior standout Marcella Mercer for top honors in the girls college prep division.
Greenwood fired a first-round score of 79 on Saturday and trailed the front-runner Mercer by two strokes heading into Sunday's final round. Greenwood responded with the best girls round of the tournament Sunday, carding even-par 72 for a two-day total of 151 and a win over Mercer by three strokes.
Taylor Mularski of Spokane finished third at 157 and Montana Grizzly freshman player Meredith Boos took fourth at 160.
"It was a great round to be two back and then come out and shoot 72 to win the tournament," said Corvallis coach Kristy Schlimgen, whose team saw its Monday meet in Polson canceled because of smoke.
"It was a confidence booster for Macee for sure. She's just really playing consistent golf right now and not making very many mistakes. She's constantly working on things because her goal is to play college golf."
A total of 12 girls, ages 15-18, competed in the girls college prep division. More than twice that many competed in the boys' division and Kade McDonough of Missoula earned a runner-up finish, finishing with a 1-under score of 143. Bozeman's Justus Verge won the boys competition at 138.
William Smith of Whitefish and Joe Optiz of Missoula also turned in strong performances. Smith took fifth at 150 and Optiz seventh at 152. Cameron Kahle of Columbia Falls tied for ninth at 155, Zeke Boos of Missoula was 12th at 156 and Luke Schlimgen of Corvallis tied for 13th at 159.
Bill Speltz is Missoulian Sports Editor and has served as Sunday columnist the past 14 years. Do you have a story idea? Email Bill at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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