Hunter Blanks earned his second straight trip to the Class 3A state golf tournament and Glen Rose just missed qualifying as a team at the recent 3A Region I championship in Lubbock.
Blanks placed third individually with rounds of 71 and 74 to finish at one-over-par 145. He advances to state as an individual medalist and will compete at the Roy Kizer Golf Course in Austin next Tuesday and Wednesday.
"He's really excited," Glen Rose golf coach Larry Mitchell said of Blanks. "He was a little disappointed (not to win) district, but I just kept telling him it would come, and at the right time he did. At district he was playing on courses and with guys he was familiar with and he wasn't as focused. We went to regionals on a different course with different competition and he played his best golf just like he did last year."
Blanks tied for eighth at state last year and is looking forward to returning for a second shot at the Roy Kizer course.
"(Roy Kizer) plays real similar to our links course here in Glen Rose," Mitchell explained. "That's quite a bit of an advantage for him. Last year his goal was to finish in the top 10 and he did. This year his goal is to win it."
As a team, the Tigers finished in 311 strokes on day one and 312 on day two for a total of 623. Blanks' round of 71, Shane Washburn's 77, Austin Jordan's 81 and Tanner Tongate's 82 combined for the first round score, while Bryce Greer's round of 84 did not count on the team card. On day two, Blanks' 74, Breer's 77, Tongate's 79 and Jordan's 82 made up the team total with Washburn's 86 being left out.
Final individual numbers showed Greer, a senior, and Tongate both finishing in 161 total strokes, and Jordan and Washburn each scoring 163.
The team score placed Glen Rose third in the region behind District 7-3A rival Gatesville (296+297=593) and Graham (284+313=597).
Greer is the only player Glen Rose will lose to graduation. Blanks is a junior, Jordan and Tongate are sophomores and Washburn is just a freshman.
"We only lose the one senior," said Mitchell. (Washburn) is just a freshman and he's been taking lessons and has improved remarkably this spring. We plan on him being able to replace (Greer), and if that happens we should be even better next year."