There would be no second-day drama at this year’s 5A boys state golf tournament — just as the Rocky Mountain Grizzlies drew it up.
One year after losing to rival Eagle in heartbreaking fashion, Rocky Mountain ensured a happier ending Tuesday with a dominant performance at BanBury Golf Course. Led by individual medalist Carson Barry and runner-up Sam Tidd, the Grizzlies won by 30 strokes to end the Mustangs’ six-year state stranglehold.
“We felt like we let one slip away last year when Eagle came back and beat us,” Rocky Mountain coach Mike McCrady said. “Our kids were determined. They stepped up and got the job done.”
Barry held a four-stroke lead after firing a 3-under 68 on Monday. He played safe golf Tuesday to maintain his four-stroke margin, carding an even-par 71 to win the title with a two-round score of 139.
“I was just trying to keep it consistent out there, just keep hitting fairways and greens,” Barry said. “I was glad to win the individual title, but it was even more important to knock off Eagle and get the team championship. That was our No. 1 goal.”
A birdie on No. 13 all but sealed the victory for Barry, who was joined in the top 10 by teammates Tidd (143) and Ranger Downs (153). Drew Reinke (154) and Henry Bernard (155) rounded out a consistent effort for the Grizzlies, who posted a team score of 587.
“Carson Barry is a clutch player, and he played the No. 1 to a tee,” McCrady said. “But everyone did a great job of playing their role. They really attacked the course and bettered their scores.”
Tidd, in particular, bounced back, firing a 68 to climb back into medalist contention. The sophomore knew that even if he couldn’t catch his first-place teammate, he could help seal the team victory.
“It was big for me to get back under par and work my way back to second place,” Tidd said. “Our team worked really hard all year for this.”
Vallivue senior and Boise State signee Connor Johnstone (143) finished third, followed by District Three champion, defending state medalist and Texas A&M signee Josh Gliege of Eagle (144).
Eagle (617) was second in the team race, followed by Lewiston (625) and Post Falls (635).
On the girls’ side, a balanced effort helped first-round leader Idaho Falls hold on for a seven-shot victory over Highland. The Tigers finished at 680 to secure the first state title in program history.
“The girls stayed mentally strong,” Idaho Falls coach Kevin Kavran said. “It was a battle all day long — we knew Highland was good, and Eagle was right there, too.”
Individual medalist honors went to Highland sophomore Payton Fehringer, who finished at 2-under 140. After blistering the course with a 5-under 66 on Monday, Fehringer shot a 74 on Tuesday and finished nine strokes clear of Idaho Falls senior Yedin Lui.
“I really wanted to win it this time,” said Fehringer, who finished runner-up by one stroke as a freshman. “That was my mindset coming into this tournament. I thought I made a couple of clutch putts both days and just played pretty solid golf.”
Highland (687), Eagle (688) and Timberline (695) rounded out the team race. The top local finisher was Centennial’s Kaitlynn Deeble, who placed fifth at 157.
State golf champions
▪ 5A: Rocky Mountain (boys), Idaho Falls (girls)
▪ 4A: Twin Falls (boys and girls)
▪ 3A: Buhl (boys), Kellogg (girls)
▪ 2A: Nampa Christian (boys and girls)