After taking second place in districts a week ago, the Fort Zumwalt West Jaguars ventured to Old Fort Golf Course in Troy on May 6, and thanks to solid efforts from sophomore Braden Hoisington and freshman Max Sigman, they turned in another decent postseason outing on the links.
Zumwalt West, which previously finished behind Holt in the Class 4, District 4 tournament on April 29, took third place overall at the Class 4, Sectional 2 tournament in Troy. The rank is one spot out of the top two qualifying teams, with a 337 score over the 18-hole course.
The tournament also takes the top 12 individuals from non-qualifying teams, meaning Zumwalt West has multiple players moving on in the postseason, with Sigman and Hoisington representing the Jaguars at the state tournament.
Hoisington made the cut for the Class 4 State tournament with a third-place finish, shooting a 77 and finishing five-over-par just one shot behind second-place finisher, Arjun Hieren of Marquette.
“I think [going in] we had a pretty legitimate shot and finishing second, maybe first if we had a really good day, but unfortunately we had a couple of the guys struggle and the course was wet with some tricky greens, so the scores were up a bit and the course played true to form,” Zumwalt West coach Mike DeYoung said.
Hoisington did not need much incentive to do well. The sophomore came in looking to make his second state cut, and he managed to do enough to advance to next week’s state tournament Silo Ridge Golf and Country Club in Bolivar, Mo.
“I felt like I played pretty solid,” Hoisington said. “I felt like I held my own against the course, and the course was playing tough especially with a lot of the scores playing high. So, I felt like I held my own against the course and was able to keep it together throughout the day.”
DeYoung said he didn’t have to motivate Hoisington much for the sectional round.
“Well, I really decided to turn him loose,” DeYoung said. “He really doesn’t need a whole lot of coaching, so he was probably struggling a little bit with his iron game keeping his shots in, but there were a lot of other kids struggling too and he made it through.”
In addition, Sigman shot an 86 and finished 14-over-par to tie with Fort Zumwalt North’s Kyle Saake at 21st place, making him the other state qualifier from the Jaguars.
Six other area golfers made the cut for the Class 4 tournament as individuals. Cole Prager and Kurt Brewster from Francis Howell, Sam Emerick from Francis Howell Central, Blake Heimburger from Holt, Hyatt Hynes from Liberty and Hunter Niles from Timberland.
Hoisington went to state as a freshman in 2018 and shot a 75 on both days of the tournament.
Next Monday and Tuesday in Bolivar, he hopes to break that record.
“I’m going in there with no expectations, just trying to play my best,” Hoisington said. “If I have that mindset, then that will place me pretty high up on the leaderboard. If I play like I can [do it], then the scores will turn out in my favor.”