Eliminated in playoffs the past two years, the South Oldham High School boys golf team finally got over the hump Tuesday.
It’s the first regional title in South Oldham boys golf history.
“This deserves a banner, right?” coach Chris Cunningham asked with a smile. “We’ve been so close the last two years. First regional win as a team, so super excited about that.”
South Oldham had lost the team title in a three-way playoff with Christian Academy and St. Xavier in the 2021 regional and to Oldham County and St. X in the 2022 regional. Last year’s team advanced to the state championships as the regional runner-up and placed seventh.
Barke, a junior, was one of three players to return from that team and led the way Tuesday.
He started his round on the back nine at Oxmoor and birdied Nos. 10-12. He sank a 10-foot eagle putt on No. 17 to put him at 4-under through eight holes.
“I hit a lot of really good wedge shots to start the round,” Barke said. “Getting the round off to a hot start, I was able to ride that momentum all the way in. … After the last two years we realized, ‘You don’t want to be in a playoff. Let’s just go ahead and get it done.’”
Barke finished at 5-under 67, two shots ahead of St. X’s Dylan Logsdon and Oldham County’s Tyler Wirth. South Oldham’s Caleb King and Christian Academy’s Will Judd tied for fourth with 70s.
South Oldham won the team title by seven shots over St. X (292). Christian Academy was third at 293 and was followed by Trinity (296) and Eastern (303).
“Getting out of this region eliminates a lot of really good teams,” Cunningham said. “There’s still plenty of good teams left, but our sights are on a state championship.”
Only the top two teams earned spots in the first round of the state tournament set for next Tuesday at Kenton County Golf Courses in Independence. The final rounds of the state tournament are set for Oct. 3-4 at Bowling Green Country Club.
The top 10 individual finishers not on one of the top two teams also advanced to next week’s first-round action at Kenton County. Joining Wirth and Judd will be Collins’ Sam Guest (71), Trinity’s Will Hudson (71), Trinity’s Matthew Money (72), Eastern’s Christian Clements (72), Christian Academy’s Brady Smith (73), Manual’s Will Warms (74), Christian Academy’s Brady Faulkner (74) and Eastern’s Luke Bryant (74).
CAL’s Smith, a senior, was the individual state champion last year.
Reach Jason Frakes at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on X @kyhighs.
More high school golf: Check out Region Five qualifiers for the Kentucky high school girls golf state tournament
This article originally appeared on Louisville Courier Journal: KHSAA boys golf: South Oldham nips St. Xavier for first regional title