HESSTON - Sophomore Michael O’Connor led the Hutchinson Community College men’s golf team to a third-place finish during the first of six Jayhawk Conference-designated tournaments on Monday at Hesston Golf Park.
O’Connor tied for fifth as Hutchinson put together back-to-back rounds of 301 on Monday to place third in the 10-team field behind Johnson County and defending conference and region champion Dodge City.
O’Connor carded a pair of 2-over-par rounds of 73 to lead HCC in its 2012 fall season opener. He was the only Blue Dragon in the Top 10 on Monday. O’Connor finished in a fifth-place tie with Johnson County’s Alex Ferristol.
The other four Blue Dragons just finished out of the Top 10 on Monday, but none were happy with their play.
Sophomore Trey Hayden shot back-to-back 5-over 76s for a 36-hole total of 146, which good enough for a five-way tie for 11th.
Sophomore Ben Cotton, freshman Jordan Hecker and sophomore Mason Varner all tied for 14th at 153.
Cotton had rounds of 76 and 77. Hecker, playing in his first collegiate tournament, opened with a 78 in the morning and improved to 75 in the afternoon round. Varner shot rounds of 76 and 77.
Johnson County trailed Dodge City by nine strokes after the morning round, but the Cavaliers rallied to win the team title by five strokes. Johnson County, led by Mario Funcic, shot 288 in the afternoon round to Dodge City’s 302.
Funcic shot 3-under 68 to finish at 1-under 141 to win the individual title.
Hutchinson will next compete at the First Union Bank Invitational, played host by defending national champion Indian Hills Community College next Monday and Tuesday. The tournament will be 54 holes.
(HCC Sports Information)