CARMEL — Columbus North wasn’t ranked in the top five this season, but Bryce Turner felt the Bull Dogs belonged there.
The past two days, the Bull Dogs proved why. They followed Tuesday’s 305 with a 303 on Wednesday at Prairie View Golf Club to finish fifth with a 608 in the IHSAA Boys Golf State Finals.
“I think we were a top-five team all year,” Turner said. “The rankings really didn’t show it, but I really felt like we were. I know we didn’t quite have our absolute best stuff today and (Tuesday), but I think we made a pretty solid showing, and I’m just proud of everyone, especially Matt (Vorndran).”
Vorndran, who carded a 2-over 74 on Tuesday, came back with a 2-under 70 Wednesday to finish in a tie for fourth at 144 and earn All-State honors.
The senior was 1-under Tuesday before finishing bogey-double bogey. Wednesday, he bogeyed No. 16 and doubled No. 17 before coming back to finish with a birdie on No. 18.
“I’m very happy about it,” Vorndran said. “Sixteen, 17 and 18 kind of hurt me over the two days, but I’m still happy with my round. I think we all came here and played well.”
Vorndran flirted with first place a couple of times in Wednesday’s final round. He was 3-under for the day after a 33 on the front nine and 4-under after a birdie on No. 10.
Both times, he was within a shot of the individual lead.
“He struggled a little bit on 16 and 17,” North coach Doug Bieker said of Vorndran. “But I can’t say enough about his efforts all year long. It’s well-deserved. He played great, and I’m happy for him.”
North’s second-score Wednesday came from No. 5 player Henry Kiel. Kiel followed his 83 Tuesday with a 77 Wednesday.
Kiel was 1-under Wednesday until a double-bogey on No. 9.
“Henry coming back from a rough start (Tuesday) to shoot 77 today and to be our second-best score as a sophomore, that’s awesome for him,” Bieker said.
Seniors Spencer Fairbanks and Turner each shot 78 Wednesday. Sophomore Drew Smith added an 82.
Fairbanks, who had a 74 Tuesday, finished in a tie for 27th at 152.
“I’m a little disappointed,” Fairbanks said. “I just wasn’t hitting it well. We were hoping top four, but top five, I’m happy with as a team.”
The top four earn spots on the medals podium. Top-ranked Center Grove rallied from a six-shot deficit to begin the day to win with a state-record 573, followed by Carmel (586), Westfield (594) and Noblesville (598).
Center Grove’s 281 over the final 18 holes broke the single-round record of 283 set by North in 2011 and tied by Noblesville in 2013. Center Grove junior Noah Gillard won medalist honors with a 6-under 138.
“I’m proud of this team and the efforts they’ve made,” Bieker said. “I think this team was capable, and they just hadn’t quite shown it. It’s a super time for them to actually show it, and it’s great for those three seniors and for (senior) Zachary Schiavello, who played a lot for us this year. It’s awesome for those guys going out here at the state championship.”