The wait was eerily similar for Blake Elsberry. But this time the Monroe City senior golfer was not disappointed when the final scores came in.
The wait was eerily similar for Blake Elsberry.
But this time the Monroe City senior golfer was not disappointed when the final scores came in.
Elsberry snagged the 12th and final individual score Monday during the Class 2 sectional at Norwoods Golf Club to advance to the Missouri State High School Activities Association state finals.
Elsberry carded a score of 86.
“Very nerve racking,” the Monroe City senior said of having to wait out the final 45 minutes to see the rest of the scores post. “I knew it was going to be close. But I am just excited I have the opportunity to go to state for the first time and hopefully I can make the most of it.”
Last season Elsberry sat in 12th place until the very last group of golfers came off the course. The final score bumped Elsberry out of the final individual spot.
“Oh lord we couldn’t be any happier for him this time around,” Monroe City coach Rod Galloway said. “We don’t care if he only made it by one stroke, we are just glad to be there. This has been four years in the making.”
Early on Monday it looked like Elsberry’s season would end short of advancing to the state finals. He carded double-bogeys on three of the first four holes and found himself 8-over-par through his first six holes.
“My chipping and putting were not very good the first few holes,” Elsberry admitted. “I just was not putting myself in a very good position to score very well.”
A long putt to save par on No. 8 may have been the turning point of his round, accoring to Galloway.
“He made a 30-foot putt to save par and that seemed to just loosen the rest of his game up,” the Panthers coach noted.
It started a string of four straight pars.
Although Elsberry’s start was not ideal, Galloway mentioned he was not surprised by the way his senior golfer bounced back.
“It is something he has done all season,” the veteran coach said. “He just seems to get off to a rough start and then the back nine is really his strong suit. He does a great job of finishing and bringing it home.”
Elsberry noted the way he finished was a simple solution.
“I just started hitting fairways and greens,” he said.
The state finals will begin Monday at Fremont Hills County Club. It will be a two-day, 36-hole tournament.
“I am just excited and ready to hopefully do my best down there,” the senior said.