Well before the season began on the golf course for Skyline, coach Mike Fleming knew he had a team capable of making a run at a historic season.
On Tuesday at The Plateau Club, that belief was reinforced in the biggest way possible.
The Spartans got a team-best 38 from Kelley Sullivan on the front nine and used superior depth to sneak past Sammamish rival and defending 4A state champion Eastlake 194 to 199, handing the Wolves their first team loss in three seasons.
Fleming said it had been “seven or eight years now,” by his estimation since Skyline topped its closest 4A KingCo foe, and said the experience of his team showed through against Eastlake.
“We’re finally one of the older teams in the league,” he said, noting third place team finishes at state the past two years. “The time you get better is the spring and summer and our kids did that.”
Sullivan was co-medalist for the match along with Eastlake’s Scott Nielsen and Colby Stirrat, but after the top four the Wolves had no one card lower than 45, which proved to be the deciding factor in an otherwise even match. After Sullivan, Brian Mogg and brother Chris Mogg shot 39, as did Ryan Johnson and Adam Nutt.
“It was pretty tight up until the end,” Fleming said. “I was pretty thrilled, they (his team) were pretty excited.”
RP McCoy and Spencer Weiss shot 39 to keep their team within reach, as each of the Wolves’ top four scorers broke 40 to keep stride with the Spartans before ultimately falling.
While the win was certainly another nice notch in the belt of the still-unbeaten Spartans, Fleming said the ultimate goal lies down the road, when his team hopes to qualify three or four players to the state tournament to have a shot at the team crown.
Skyline qualified only two players to state last year, as Mogg finished in a tie for third and Sullivan a six-way tie for eighth, and still finished ahead of all but two teams.
“Being undefeated is great,” Fleming said. “But that wasn’t really our goal.”
The Spartans have two more league matches remaining, with Inglemoor and Woodinville, before they can put a bow on a perfect season. After that, a trip to the two-day KingCo tournament October 22-23 will decide league finishes and state berths for the spring.