Besides a hiccup in the middle of the round, LSA's Hunter York is playing as solid as ever.
With a course that favors strong play off the tee, York took advantage with his big drive and connected for four birdies en route to a 2-under 70 to take a one-stroke lead at the Class 1A boys state golf tournament.
At Prairie Vista Golf Course in Bloomington, York shot better than either of his rounds last year
"It went smooth. I didn't have a bogey until 12 and then had back-to-back bogeys and got those out of the way," York said. "It was smooth after that."
The senior said a couple of issues -- first fighting through the wind on the No. 12 par 3 and then a poor shot with a wedge on 13 -- contributed to the two black marks, but he rebounded right away by birdieing 14.
The round puts him a shot ahead of Eureka's Trevor Gold, who beat York by two strokes last year.
It's the latest round from York that's trending in the right direction. After shooting a 73 at regionals, he won sectionals with a 72.
"Yeah, I've been playing good lately, but I've been playing smooth recently," York said. "It's all about getting the ball off the tee (at Prairie Vista). I hit my driver really well."
After spending time at state alone the past three years, York is now joined by a team that tied for fourth at state. Mitch Cremer finished with an 87, Dylan Ground had an 89 and Griffin Sparks rounded out the top four with a 90.
Neoga's Luke Baker fired an 80 after starting on the back 9 at even par. Effingham St. Anthony's Garrett Hixenbaugh shot an 82 to lead the Bulldogs and Robinson's Tom Goodman had an 82 as well to tie for 32nd.
The Bulldogs sit in seventh place in team play heading into today's round.
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NORMAL — Jordan Perry had it all lined up, had birdied two of the last three holes before finishing off a stellar first round.
Then disaster stuck.
The Lincoln senior found water on the Par 3 No. 17 at Weibring Golf Course, and couldn't recover before turning in an 8 before bogeying the last hole.
"I was coming off of two birdies coming off 14 and 15, parred 16 and had a lot of momentum," Perry said.
It's been his nemesis during his previous four state tournament rounds.
"I've had trouble with that hole in the past," Perry said. "It was just straight dead into the wind and I'm always guessing what to hit. I hit a hybrid today and choked down it and it went clear over the green and I just had no shot from there."
Despite the disappointing finish, Perry's only six strokes off the lead and in 10th place at the Class 2A tournament.
Mattoon turned in a strong day as a team with Luke Owen leading the way. The senior shot a 79 to finish one stroke ahead of teammate Austin Warrem and three ahead of Jackson Berg. The Wave are fifth in team standings, just three strokes out of third place and 13 behind the leader Morton.
Effingham's Callaway Smith carded an 83, with a strong 39 on the front 9. The Mount Zion duo of Danny Miller and Ben Cleveland had rounds of 85 and 87, respectively.