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Boys Golf: Royal Knights get even
River Ridge soundly defeats Ridgewood, Mitchell to earn co-SAC champ honors.
By By DAVID MURPHY
Published October 10, 2007
TARPON SPRINGS - For River Ridge and its No. 1 golfer, a season came full circle Tuesday morning. After losing to Ridgewood and Mitchell by a combined three strokes at the start of the season, the Royal Knights beat the Mustangs by six and the Rams by 10 en route to winning the Sunshine Athletic Conference tournament at Crescent Oaks.
On a day when no golfer broke par, River Ridge senior Kiel Jackson shot 1-over 73 to win the individual title.
"We all had an idea we were going to win," said Jackson, who last year finished just one stroke out of a tie for first place with then-Wesley Chapel golfer Andrew Horn.
That feeling stemmed largely from the practice round the Royal Knights played Thursday, when four of their top five scorers broke 80. With wide, forgiving fairways and a fairly lengthy layout, Crescent Oaks seemed to favor River Ridge's long hitters.
Tuesday, two of Jackson's teammates joined him in the top 10: Blake Thaxter finished seventh with 79, and Cory Altwies tied for 10th with 82.
"It's a long course, and my guys hit a long way off the tee," said River Ridge coach Mike Marlin, whose team has won nine straight matches since starting the season 0-2. "So that played to our strength."
Officially, River Ridge is co-SAC champions with Mitchell, which won more SAC matches during the regular season.
The Mustangs placed three in the top 10, including Chaz Heinz and Kenny Cavender, who tied for third with 76. Zephyrhills' Rick Briggs finished second with 75.