West Ranch boys golf’s Gunnar Murray had never been a medalist this season.
But he wasn’t deterred. He stayed consistent for every Foothill League meet, right down to the sixth and final one Thursday, when he was co-medalist on the day and, consequently, named the league’s top individual golfer for 2017.
“It feels good to kind of swoop one underneath their feet and get the ‘W,’” Murray said. “That feels good.”
Murray’s league-topping season score was 372. Hart’s Jess Scheller was second at 375 and Art Thompson, also of Hart, was third at 375.
Valencia’s Jackson Bright was fourth with a 384 and Diego Renteria was fifth with 387.
Specifically, in league meet No. 6, Murray shared the day’s medalist honor with Scheller. Both scored 3-over 78’s at TPC Valencia.
Thompson carded a 6-over for third place.
Scheller tied up the match on the 18th hole, thanks to a perfectly executed drive.
“I didn’t know what was going to happen,” Murray said. “And up until the last putt, if I didn’t make that putt, then something else would’ve happened. It got kind of down to the wire, but I finished well.”
The meet was also the second day of the Newhall Cup, which Scheller was named individual champion of.
“My short game was really good,” Scheller said. “It was working for me really well. My putting was solid when I needed to make a putt, I did.”
The Indians topped the league as a team with an overall score of 1,976. With a 2,005, West Ranch was second, and at 2,092, Valencia was third.
Saugus was fourth (2,099), Golden Valley was fifth (2,297) and Canyon was sixth (2,789).
Hart was the top team in every league meet but one. In Thursday’s meet, it scored a first-place 407. West Ranch scored 413 for second and Valencia scored 435 for third.
The Indians also had a medalist in every league meet to push them closer to the overall crown.
“You know you have a team that can win when you have that,” said Thompson. “At any given time, you can and will have the No. 1 player out there. That makes you just have the idea that you won’t lose. And with that, you won’t lose. And we didn’t.”
The top five individual golfers from the season will proceed to the postseason, which begins on May 8 with the CIF Southern Section Northern Division Regionals.
The team postseason starts on May 15 with the CIF Southern Sectional Northern Division Team Divisional.
Hart, West Ranch and Valencia are guaranteed playoff spots, while Saugus will apply for an at-large bid.