CICERO — For several years the Avon Orioles boys’ golf team fell just short of winning the Hoosier Crossroads Conference title. With six teams ranked in the top 20, Monday afternoon’s HCC tournament at Bear Slide Golf Club was one of the toughest challenges the Orioles had faced all season.
Behind Keegan McKinney’s one over-par 72, the Orioles hoisted the HCC trophy. McKinney won back-to-back medalist honors after winning this tournament last season, but the overall victory meant more to the Ball State-bound senior.
“It feels good to get the team win,” McKinney said smiling. “The last five years we’ve missed out by a total of five shots. I made one birdie and gave myself a lot of looks but could not get any putts to go in.
“It could have been a really special round.”
Three schools finished six strokes behind Avon (309) as Hamilton Southeastern, Westfield and Zionsville all put up 315 as second through fourth were all decided by the fifth golfer’s score.
“I’m so glad we’re leaving here with a win,” Avon coach Tom Maples said. “I’m so tired leaving this place losing by a shot or two the last three years. I told the seniors before they got off the bus that they deserved this and to go get it.”
McKinney (72), Mark Whipple (74), Joe Floreancig (80), Luke Berger (83) and Brad Patz (86) made up the Oriole’s scoring.
“Keegan and Mark were huge today,” Maples said.
Both McKinney and Whipple made the All-HCC team along with Brownsburg’s Derek Hettmansperger.
“Derek had three doubles, was disappointed in himself and didn’t putt well today on some holes he needed to save a bogey,” Brownsburg coach Steve Brown said. “Otherwise, he played nice with two birdies on each side. I’m proud of him for hanging in there and leading us again.”