Michael Strain was already beaming after he chipped-in on No. 16 on Thursday in the final round of the boys’ Class 2A state golf tournament at Ridges at Sand Creek in Jordan. Then one shot later, he one-upped his own accomplishment.
The Staples-Motley junior aced the 154-yard 17th hole at Ridges with a 9-iron, putting the crown on an even-par score of 72 in the biggest round of his life.
“I play a big hook so the back-right pin location was perfect for me,” Strain, a lefty, said after completing his day. “As soon as I hit it I thought it might be good.”
Indeed, the ball took one bounce and rolled into the bottom of the cup.
Ordinarily, putting is the best part of Strain’s game. And his 25 putts Thursday are nothing to complain about.
“I’ll remember this forever,” he said. “I mean, chip in on 16 and get a hole in one on 17 on the final day of the state tournament? It’s go big or go home. And I went big.”
This is Strain's second career ace. He got his first at his home course, but said this one is by far the better of the two.
It’s believed Strain’s ace is the first in the boys’ state tournament. Minnetonka’s Taylor Post notched a hole in one during the 2007 Class 2A girls’ golf tournament at Bunker Hills in Coon Rapids. Minnesota State High School League executive director Dave Stead said then it was the first he could remember in more than 25 years of attending the tournament.