SPRING VALLEY, WI - The golf season may get derailed a little here and there due to weather, but returning individual state champion Tyler Leach is hitting his stride right away.

The Cardinals competed at the Western Wisconsin Invite at Pheasant Hills and Bristol Ridge last Friday and Saturday, along with 21 other teams.

The Cardinals didn’t win, they finished seventh of all the teams, and Leach took first place by nine strokes over the second place finisher.

River Falls won the two-day event with a total score of 666, followed by Chippewa Falls (669), Hudson (685), Rice Lake (699), Somerset (700), New Richmond (702), and Spring Valley (703). Following the Cardinals were Amery (705), Tomah (705), Durand (728), Bloomer (740), B-W (745), SCC (749), Cadott (750), Grantsburg (786), Prescott (792), Ellsworth (806), Mondovi (812), Osceola (827), Glenwood City (832), Clear Lake (884) and Cumberland (893).

Leach, a junior, shot a 74 and a 72 for a two-day total of 146, well ahead of Amery’s Thomas Christensen with a 155.

Senior Zach Boisen took second for the Cardinals and 11th overall with a two-day total of 168, followed by sophomore Josh Hannack with a score of 192, junior Tyler Konobeck (197) and a combination of freshman Colton Kotval and Trevor Stangl as the fifth golfer had a score of 214.

I am very pleased with how we played,” said Head Coach Matt Ducklow. “Tyler won by 9 shots.  Boisen played really well finishing 11th out of 110 players.  Our 3-5 showed some very good things.”

The Cardinals were the top small school in the tournament.

“We finished behind division 1 and 2 schools,” Ducklow said. “We still have a lot to work on.  Consistency will be the key. If we can get our number three-five golfers closer to 90-94, we will be in good shape.”

The Cardinals hosted a conference meet Thursday (weather permitting) and will golf on Tuesday at Glenwood City in another conference meet at Glen Hills Golf Course.