EL DORADO – The Benton girls finished second and the boys fifth in the 18th Annual Simmons First Wildcat Invitational Golf Tournament at the par-71 El Dorado Country Club on Monday. The Lady Panthers shot a 312 coming behind a dominate performance from Conway, which shot a 251. Smackover was third at 331, El Dorado fourth, Camden Harmony Grove and Sheridan. Conway’s Logan Tolliver took the overall girls title with an 80, while her teammate Alexis McDaniel shot an 81.
“The girls played really tough, really well,” Benton Coach David Torres said. “I was real pleased with the girls’ team. They shot really, really well under brutal conditions again. It was hot and El Dorado has a hilly course. I think we’re getting used to the conditions more.”
Conway also took the title on the boys’ side shooting a 314 and edging host El Dorado by four strokes. Fordyce (324) took third, White Hall (325) fourth and Benton sixth at 336. Conway’s Whit Parker and El Dorado’s Gage Parker each shot a 72 for the overall lead.
“Sam Eddington played really well,” Torres said. “He finished tied for fourth. The guys just struggled a little bit, but looking at the bright side, El Dorado beat us by 30 strokes in Texarkana (Thursday) and only beat us 18 [Monday]. So we’re closing the gap. We just want to keep closing the gap for conference and eventually defend our (6A South) title.”
For Benton, Eddington, a sophomore, led the Panthers with a 78, followed by freshman Cole Treece’s 83. Sophomore Joe Adams had an 86, senior Matthew Perry scored an 89 and sophomore Jack Jumper chipped in with a 92.
The Lady Panthers were led by sophomore Kristyn Coffman’s 102, followed by sophomore Savanna Simpson’s 104, senior Karli Lipinski’s 106 and junior Jenna Jamison’s 106. Sophomore Abby Pennington’s 124 didn’t count toward the team total as the top four score count.
The Panthers will play at Hurricane Creek at 3:30 p.m. today in Bryant, weather permitting.