GENEVA – It wasn’t first place, but is was pretty darn noteworthy.
The Burlington Central boys golf team set a new school record Thursday at the Geneva Invitational at Mill Creek Golf Club, posting a team score of 298, besting the old Rockets record by seven strokes. Wheaton Warrenville South shot a collective 296 to win the invitational but the achievement had the Rockets all smiles.
“We shot a 298, and that actually shattered our school record by seven. So it’s very special,” Burlington Central senior Matt Weber said. “We knew coming in here that this course was pretty scoreable. The guys have played here before. I knew it was a very good possibility that we could do it, I think all of us knew it. And for us to come together, it was really special to hear all the scores and get excited.”
Weber, a St. Charles native, was quick to point out the record-setting performance of his team as a whole, but he actually nabbed first place, shooting the lowest individual score of the tournament with a 3-under par 68.
“It was a lot more exciting to hear [about the team score] than to hear that I won, but it was definitely nice to come out on top,” Weber said. “This is a pretty tough tournament, a lot of good schools here, a lot of kids I know. It’s nice.”
“It’s a good way to kick things off. I’ve been playing a lot of tournaments this summer, a lot of competitive golf. But it’s good to continue the good play, get out here and start playing well.”
Weber wasn’t the only local product near the top of the leaderboard Thursday. Marmion’s Joe Fritz finished second with a 69, and St. Charles North’s Raghav Cherala finished fifth with a 73.
The tournament got off to a late start, but that’s better than getting off to no start at all, which looked like a distinct possibility earlier in the day as rain soaked the course. But the showers let up shortly before start time, and, for the golfers, the conditions weren’t as bad as might have been expected.
“It wasn’t too bad, I was expecting a little bit more water on the course, but it played OK and it wasn’t really affecting the swing too much,” St. Charles East senior Connor Dieckman said.
“It was soggy. It wasn’t actually playing too bad,” Weber said. “The fairways were not too saturated compared to what I thought they could be. I’ve played here when it’s been absolutely almost underwater. The greens, obviously, they’re going to get beat up pretty hard. But I thought the course was in pretty fair shape for the weather that we had today.”
In the end, Wheaton Warrenville South and Burlington Central took the top two spots, with Marmion a close third (299). Glenbard South (300), St. Charles North (304) and the Geneva White team (306) were close behind.