[OCT 27-28 | ARDMORE, OK] In their final times representing Team Texas at the annual Red River Challenge, Keller senior Cole Grossl and Austin senior Hanna Liu cemented their place in the history of this prestigious event by capturing 4th and 2nd place, respectively, among the field of more than 100 players from Texas and Oklahoma.
The 14th playing of the Red River Challenge was a hotly contested affair from both the individual and team perspective. In the Boys Division, Grossl shot an opening round 2-over 72 to stand three shots back of OK teammates Andrew Goodman and Cooper Davis. Between them stood McKinney Boyd standout Reed Foster, who opened with a 1-over 71, finding himself in the final group of the day to start the second round. In the final round, Grossl was steady, making two early birdies, but getting a stroke back on the driveable par-4 13th and closing out with four straight pars to finish his round. For Foster, a 1-under-par front nine in the final round left him just one shot off Goodman’s lead, but a double-bogey on 13 and a wicked lip-out for eagle on 14 kept him from applying any serious pressure on Goodman down the stretch.
Foster and Grossl finished tied for 4th with OK’s Craig Sanders at 3-over-par, with Grossl taking the 4th-place hardware in a scorecard playoff (and Sanders taking 5th).
In the Girls Division, Liu opened the tournament with a 3-over-par 73 and stood in solo second going into the final round, three shots behind OK’s Lilly Thomas. Starting on the back 9, both Liu and Thomas birdied the 10th hole, and after nine holes, Liu had made up one stroke, cutting the lead to just 2 as the girls stood on the tea of the par-3 fourth hole. A birdie on No. 4 brought Liu within a shot of Thomas’, but a bogey on the next hole, coupled with a birdie by Thomas put the title just out of reach. Back-to-back 73s were good enough for Liu to capture solo second place, two shots behind the champion.
The team competition was one of the tightest, most drama-filled in the 14-year history of the tournament. After the first day, the score was tied 7-7 (the first ever tie after Day 1 since the tournament’s inception). Halfway through the final round, the score was again tied at 11-11, with only the last 4-5 remaining groups on the golf course. Unfortunately for Team Texas, the last few holes in each match swung the way of Team Oklahoma, as they were able to squeeze out one- or two-shot victories on the last hole in each of the final groupings, resulting in a narrow 16-12 victory for Team Oklahoma, their second team victory in a row.
To view the full leaderboard for individual scores, click here. For photos from the event, view the Red River album on the TJGT Flickr Page.