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Willmar two shots off lead: Team scoring

Willmar Cardinals senior Colin Erickson comes out of the first cut on No. 7 at Eagle Creek Golf Club on Friday afternoon in Willmar. Erickson finished the front nine with a 39 after a birdie on No. 9. Tribune photo by Rand Middleton

WILLMAR -- It was hard to believe -- 75 degrees and sunny.

This never happens during the Willmar/Litchfield Boy Golf Invitational -- a 36-hole event infamous for its disagreeable mid-April weather.

"I can't remember it ever being like this," said Litchfield senior Andrew Whitchurch, who was playing for the fifth time in this tournament.

Whitchurch shot a 75 to lead the 146-player field along with Chris Tobkin of New London-Spicer.

The tournament resumes today at 9 a.m. at the Litchfield Golf Club. The forecast is for a high of 64 degrees, partly sunny with a 30 percent chance of rain.

The Willmar A team found the heat to its liking. Led by Colin Erickson in third with a 76 and Stevin Carlson just one back at 77, the Cardinals came home in 317 strokes. That's just two back of Sauk Rapids, which placed three players in the top 10.

Most every year, required gear is an umbrella, stocking cap and a wind gauge. This time, a good deal of the field was in shorts as a week's worth of warm, dry weather continued.

Tobkin fired off the best nine of the day -- a 33 on the back to overcome a 42 going out. Whitcomb went 39-36 and Erickson 39-37.

Alex Baker came in at 81 but Isaiah Streed, Willmar's No. 1, found trouble most of the way on the front until a birdie on No. 9 got him to Friday's halfway point with a 44. He vowed he'd come back and he did play better on the old back nine, posting a 39.

Carlson, at No. 3 for Willmar, shot 41-37 for a 77 and tied for fourth with Brian Jesse of Sauk Rapids.

Defending champion Bloomington Jefferson is in sixth place at 330 followed by NLS at 334.

A fine round was turned in by Colin Bergeson of Dawson-Boyd. He is tied for eighth place after a 38-41-79, helping the Blackjacks tie for 10th with Delano.

Peter Lindblad had the low score for Benson/KMS with an 81.

(1) Sauk Rapids 315 (2) Willmar A 317 (3) Sartell 324 (4) Litchfield A 326 (5) Owatonna 329 (6) Bloomington Jefferson 330 (7) New London-Spicer 334 (8) Bloomington Kennedy 335 (9) Hutchinson 339 (10) tie, Dawson-Boyd and Delano, each 344 (12) Rocori 346 (13) Dassel-Cokato 347 (14) Willmar B 348 (15) Mankato East 353 (16) tie, Annandale and Becker, each 362 (18) Benson/KMS 364 (19) Litchfield B 391 (20) Sauk Centre 420 (21) Lac qui Parle Valley 431

TOP 10 - (1) tie, Chris Tobkin, NLS, 39-36-75; Andrew Whitchurch, Lit, 42-33-75 (3) Colin Erickson, Wil, 39-37-76 (4) tie, Brian Jesse, SR, 40-37-77; Stevin Carlson, Wil, 41-36-77 (6) tie, Trevor Morgan, SR, 38-40-78; Justin Popp, SR, 39-39-78 (8) Nick Sage, BJ, 40-39-79; Colin Bergeson, DB, 38-41-79; Trent Thompson, Sar, 41-38-79

Area results

BENSON - Peter Lindblad 81, Sam Peterson 87, Jordan Burns 91, Cody Dokkenbakken 104, Mitch Weflen 104

DAWSON-BOYD - Bergeson 79, Nick Blascyk, 87 Andrew Roiger 88, Matt Anderson 90

LAC QUI PARLE VALLEY - Jordan Bendel 90, Quinn Swenson 90, Brandon Zinda 124, Jeff Lindberg 127

LITCHFIELD A - Whitchurch 75, Matt Thomas 82, Josh Polingo 83, Luke Magnuson 86

LITCHFIELD B - Jordan Redepenning 94, Casey Hicks-Fenton 98, Mike Waataja 98, Mike Husman 101, Ryan Storm 101

NEW LONDON-SPICER - Tobkin 75, Ryan Bergh 82, Joey Dreier 88, Ben Schlitter 89

WILLMAR A - Erickson 76, Carlson 77, Alex Baker 81, Isaiah Streed 83

WILLMAR B - Cody Magnuson 82, Blake Rasmussen 88, Pat Scheller 88, Matt Suedbeck 90