Argyle hoped to give itself a chance to compete for the Class 4A state championship by putting together a strong first-round performance on Monday at the Plum Creek Golf Course in Kyle, but playing among the second wave of competitors turned out to be an unlucky break for the Eagles.
Argyle coach Cody Vanderford said winds reached between 30 and 40 mph as the day carried on. The Eagles shot a first-round 329 and are in a tie with Melissa for fourth in the team standings while Monahans (307) built a commanding lead on Day 1.
“The conditions were really tough in that second wave, and I think Monahans had an advantage going out early,” Vanderford said. “But they’re a really good team, and they shot a really good score. Once you get beyond them, there is a big bunched-up group of people. We feel like if we go out and play a good round [Tuesday], we’ll have a chance to get a medal.”
Senior Logan Diomede set the pace for Argyle on Monday while shooting a 74 to position himself just outside of the top three, where he hopes to finish on Tuesday. Diomede trails Jack Burke (71), James Perry (72), Bond Heflin (73) and Miller Harris (73) while sitting in a three-way tie for fifth alongside Tristan Nelson and Jason Pittman II.
“He’s won so many tournaments, but the trophy that would probably make his trophy case would be medaling here at the state tournament in his senior year,” Vanderford said. “It’s an exciting time for Logan. First and foremost, he’d like to see his team do well. But golf is a sport where we’re playing two games, an individual game and a team game, all at the same time.”
Argyle’s Justus Christman (76) is in a four-way tie for 11th place after Day 1 and Isaiah Brevick is in a seven-way tie for 32nd. Zane Griggs shot a 97 and Blake Kelly finished with a 98 to round out the Eagles’ lineup.
Monahans’ 16-stroke lead over Gatesville (323) in the team standings was paced by Heflin, Pittman II, Nick Carnero (79), Alonso Ruiz (81) and Gavin Slade (84). While Argyle has a long way to go to climb back into contention for a state title, the Eagles are just six shots out of second place and trail Andrews (326) by just three shots for third.
Liberty Hill (330), Paris (332), Fredericksburg (333), Salado (334) and Huffman Hargrave (334) are also within striking distance of a top three finish, making for what should be an exciting round on Tuesday.
Argyle will begin Day 2 on the No. 1 tee at 8 a.m. Tuesday.
“You can’t chase numbers in golf,” Vanderford said. “The teams that chase numbers are typically the teams that do what we did today — you start pressing and maybe make a few poor decisions. Golf is a process game, so we just have to stick with our plan and play with the golf course. Typically, we’ll put up a pretty good number when we do that, and if we do that tomorrow, we’ll see if it gets us on the medal stand.”