The goal for a high school senior in any sport is to make his final performance memorable.
Skyridge senior golfer Tanner Davidson did just that Tuesday in final round of the 5A state boys golf tournament at TalonsCove in Saratoga Springs.
Davidson put himself in a hole early, ending up 3-over-par after the first four holes.
“I had a bogey on No. 2 and then a double on No. 4,” he said. “I was below the ridge and actually four-putted that hole.”
That wasn’t going to define his final round of golf in high school, however. Davidson rallied with three birdies to be even at the turn. There were a couple of tough holes on the back-nine but the Falcon senior finished with a team-best 73.
“Tanner was our anchor,” Skyridge head coach Mark Whetzel said. “He’s been the leader of our team and our No. 1 player all year long. For him to come in and lead the team with the 73 in his final round as a senior was awesome.”
Davidson ended up in a group where the other two golfers finished under-par, so that added some extra pressure.
“I remember being on No. 13 and I was at even-par,” he said. “I think they were both 3-under-par, so I was frustrated because I wanted to try and stick with them. Otherwise I would’ve been fine with my score. It’s kind of how it goes. You want to match everything they make.”
Davidson ended up in a tie for 10th, nine stroke behind medalist Zack Neff from Olympus.
Skyridge had the best finish of any Utah Valley team, coming in fifth overall. Olympus held off Viewmont to win the 5A team title.
“We shot 312, so two shots better than Monday,” Whetzel said. “We gave back like 10 shots just on Hole No. 18. We looked like we were going to come in around 306 or 307, which was good. But the boys were great. They worked their butts off. Everyone came in and played better than Monday.”
Davidson would’ve loved to have finished off with a team trophy but said he was pleased with the team showing at state.
“I wish we could’ve played a little bit better and try and win, but that’s OK,” Davidson said. “I think we played pretty solid overall these two days.”
Whetzel is optimistic about the future of Falcon golf, since he has a big squad and lots of talented young players.
“Last year we barely snuck into state,” he said. “This year we won our region and made the cut at state. We are building a great program.”
Whetzel credited Davidson and fellow senior Spencer Kimball for making the team be successful.
“They are great guys,” Whetzel said. “We have a very large team of 43 guys total. The way that Tanner and Spencer rallied around everyone — it didn’t matter if you were the No. 5 player or the No. 43 player, they treated them just the same. That’s the camaraderie you want as a team.”
The responsibility for the future of the Skyridge golf program will be in the hands of the underclassmen moving forward.
Davidson, however, is considering whether he wants to play golf in college or move on with other things.
No matter which path he takes, he will always have the memory of his performance in his final state tournament.
“I’m going to remember playing well and finishing strong to conclude my high school career,” Davidson said. “I think that’s how I’ll remember it.”