DELL RAPIDS, S.D. – Dakota Valley posted a fourth-place finish in the South Dakota Class A Boys State tournament, which concluded at Rocky Run Golf Course here Tuesday.

The Panthers, without a senior on their team, totaled 360 in Tuesday’s second round after holding the first-round lead with a 343 on Monday.

Tea Area wound up as team champion by 13 shots over Sisseton, while Madison was third and Dakota Valley fourth. The Panthers finished 17 shots in back of Tea Area.

Keaton Hensley (80-83) and Paul Bruns (79-84) of Dakota Valley tied for sixth individually, each carding 163. Vermillion’s Ryne Whisler (79-84) was also part of a six-way tie for sixth. All three were named to the state all-tournament team.

Brock Murphy of Tea Area battled the elements to shoot 75-77—152 and claim medalist honors by two shots over Nate Nielsen of Sisseton (76-78—154). Lucas Schaefbauer of Aberdeen Central, who won the individual title in last year’s Class A state meet at Dakota Dunes Country Club, finished third with 79-77—156.

Dakota Valley’s Isaac Burns tied for 26th in the two-day event with 86-93—179. Jordan Smith tied for 76th with 104-100—204 and Evan Monell tied for 79th at 98-108—206.

“The team played great and exceeded all preseason goals by finishing fourth in the state,” Dakota Valley Coach Rodd Slater said. “This is quite an accomplishment considering we finished sixth in our conference just two weeks ago.

“They are a competitive group and are disappointed, but I’m very proud of each for their hard work, improvement and year end results. The weather and Rocky Run played difficult with all teams posting big numbers. We avoided them yesterday but made our share today.”

All five Dakota Valley players return next season.

Hunter Lavin of Vermillion shot 86-81—167 and tied for 13th individually, while teammate Willis Robertson was 19th with 86-89—175.

Ethan Kelly of Elk Point-Jefferson also competed individually, shooting 103 in the second round.

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