Hannibal keeps its crown as NCMC champion

From left to right, Preston Bennett, Gabe Falconer, Connor Bogue, Trevor Watson, Claire Thomas and Nathan Lewton stand with the NCMC trophy Wednesday.
Posted: Apr. 26, 2017 8:33 pm

The Hannibal golf team entered the North Central Missouri Conference tournament Wednesday at Indian Hills Golf Course in Marshall as the five-time reigning champions.

The Pirates refused to be dethroned.

Hannibal compiled a team score of 326 to win its sixth straight title, turning in the best finish out of the seven-squad field. Marshall placed second with 333, while Boonville was third at 352. 

"We knew there were a couple schools that were going to give us everything we wanted, and we had some really good scores turned in," Hannibal coach Jason Noland said.

Trevor Watson earned medalist honors with a 4-over-par 76. 

"If you ask him, he's not going to be very happy with today, to be honest with you," Noland said of his standout. "He's a competitor. That's about all you can say. He always knows there are extra shots he can shave away. He's always wanting to do better."

Following Watson were three other all-conference selections: Connor Bogue, Preston Bennett and Gabe Falconer.

Bogue finished third overall with a score of 79. The senior struggled through the front nine, which was filled with trees and hills — in other words, "a lot of difficult holes," Noland said. 

But Bogue rebounded on the open, link-style back nine.

"The front nine, (Bogue) was 7-over, and he shot even on the back," the coach said. "He buckled down and kind of turned his day around, and that's exactly what you've got to do at this time."

Bennett, a freshman who has burst on the scene this season, finished with a score of 85. 

"(Bennett) has had some ups and downs, but that's what you expect from a freshman," Noland said. "He's had to figure out how to not get frustrated at one hole, and he's doing a better job of that."

Falconer rounded out the Pirates official scores with an 86, good enough to earn all-conference accolades.

"With four all-conference kids, that's big, and I'm really happy for them," Noland said. 

Next up for Hannibal is the Class 3 District 4 tournament Monday at Bogey Hills Country Club in St. Charles. 

"You go in trying to shoot the lowest score you can shoot," Noland said of districts. "We'll see what happens. We'll have a really tough district. We're going to prepare and do the best we can, and at the end of the day on Monday, we're going to see what we have." 

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