DECATUR - The back nine at Red Tail Run Golf Club can be a nuisance.
Most golfers in the boys Class 2A Mount Zion Regional found that out the hard way Tuesday.
But Christian Crabill barely flinched.
The Braves' standout junior shot a 2-under 70 (35 on the front and back) en route to grabbing first place medalist and helping Mount Zion advance to the Chatham Glenwood Sectional.
"Christian's 70 definitely made a big difference," Mount Zion coach Jeff Bagley. "We had a rough start. But I'm proud that the kids hung in there on the back nine, which is always a tougher nine."
The Braves (333) combined to shoot a best 164 on the back nine for third place behind Washington (316) and Morton (317).
And Crabill's back nine score was three strokes better than anyone else on the day.
"A couple of our guys have done better, but anything I can do to help keep the team score lower, the better," said Crabill, who finished 42nd at state last year as a sophomore. "I just took it one shot at a time. I kept looking ahead and didn't look back on any mistakes."
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And Crabill didn't have many gaffes to look back on - even during the tricky back nine.
"On hole 15, I actually thought I lost the ball in the creek," he said.
But it turned out that the ball landed only a foot from the hazard. Crabill then simply put the ball on the green to make par.
"That's probably the hardest one on the course," Crabill said of the par 4. "The rest of the holes were pretty much a breeze."
Jonathan Moon followed Crabill with an 81 as Ian Freeman (88) and Bennett Jackson (94) also scored for the Braves.
"Sectional will be very tough for us to get out of," said Bagley, whose team was knocked out of the Mount Vernon Sectional last year. "The Champaign Central Regional has some very good schools in it that we've played against all year. We would have to have four very good scores to get out."
Advancing individuals to sectional play from the area were Monticello's Drew Heffley (77, which best among the players from non-qualifying teams) and Daly O'Brien (80); Clinton's Logan Woolridge (84), Zach Newberry (82) and Corey Wisher (85); Maroa-Forsyth's Lewis Brown (83); and Lincoln's Jordan Perry (81) and Ryan Dean (86).