ACME — It was the last hole of the shotgun start and Charlevoix’s Jake Beaudoin had to beat out Leland’s Aidan Coleman on the 18th green.

Beaudoin birdied, his sixth of the day and on back-to-back holes, to finish the round at Grand Traverse Resort’s Spruce Run with a 75 to tie Coleman, who sank about a 10 foot putt to par. Both thought they tied at second.

Moments later the pair found out that because of a final hole double bogey from one-stroke leader Blake O’Connor from Glen Lake, Beaudoin and Coleman’s tie was actually for first. The two seniors would get to finish the day with an epic playoff for the regional title with all eyes on them.

After three holes, Beaudoin’s sound putting got the better of Coleman and earned him the regional medalist. His par beat Coleman’s bogey when the Leland senior hit his fairway shot into the bunker. The two golfers tied holes 18 and 17 with bogeys to returned to play 18 a third time.

“It’s so much more fun than just playing regular,” Beaudoin said of the playoff. “Having the crowd and everybody around you is pretty special.”

But O’Connor didn’t go home empty handed. His round led Glen Lake in their first regional title win since 2012 with a team score of 324, barely beating out Charlevoix, which shot 325.

Harbor Springs edged Frankfort by two strokes for the third state finals bid at 385. The Panthers carded 387, followed by Mackinaw City in fifth with 405. Coleman, Mackinaw City’s Kal O’Brien and Gaylord St. Mary’s Tristan Glasby qualified for the finals individually.

“We’ve pretty much had that same score, the 320s,” said Lakers coach Lee Houtteman. “That was kind of what we’ve been shooting so it really wasn’t a surprise.”

Houtteman said in year’s past it seemed as if the Lakers wouldn’t break 400. Between camps and long putting practices, the sixth-year coach returned the Lakers to the team state finals after fringe finishes at regionals in 2018 (fourth) and 2019 (fifth).

“We probably would have had a strong team (in 2020),” Houtteman said, who took home Michigan Interscholastic Golf Coaches Association Regional Coach of the Year honors along with the team’s trophy.

O’Connor, a Glen Lake sophomore, held the lead for medalist after an eagle on hole No. 12, the only golfer among the field of 59 to do so. He drove the green on the 305-yard downhill par-4.

“I just aimed over the big tree and hit a little cut, it turned out about 10 feet from the hole,” O’Connor said. “It wasn’t even that hard of a putt. Uphill, right to left. It went straight in.”

O’Connor followed the eagle up with a birdie on No. 13 — his third of the day — but double bogeyed three out of the last five holes to tie Charlevoix’s Sam Pletcher for third at 77.

“It was so up and down,” O’Connor said. “My driver, that was the big thing. Just sprayed it everywhere. I hit like three or four fairways. ... I had a few good drives, and they were good when they were good. When I mis-hit it, they were really bad, and that led with a lot of bogeys.”

Junior Jackson Zywicki (80), senior Gray Raymond (83) and senior Tucker Ewing (84) rounded out Glen Lake’s counters.

For the Rayders, Beaudoin, Pletcher and Hudson Vollmer (80) led the way with their putts. Junior Jack Gaffney (93) was the fourth counter. Charlevoix carded nine birdies as a team.

Beaudoin said he felt his 20-foot birdie putt on hole No. 17 got him into the playoff. His six birdies came on the last 10 holes.

“I had two three putts that were big blows to my confidence,” Beaudoin said. “Then I couple of a few putts outside of 10 or 15 feet to really save a couple of strokes.”

Beaudoin becomes a two-time regional champion after tying for 14th at the Division 4 finals as a sophomore in 2019. Coleman returns to the finals for the third time after the Comets advanced as a team when he was a freshman and sophomore.

Seeded in the top flight, Coleman didn’t birdie a hole despite seven birdie putts on the back nine.

The senior said he knew he was going to be in contention for the regional medalist but had no idea that would run through a playoff hole until about 20 minutes before he tee’d off for the playoffs.

Coleman said he mis-read putts the last two holes of the playoff, but he got over it quickly because it didn’t change the fact he was heading to state.

“Off irons, off tees, getting to the greens is fine,” Coleman said. “Those short putts like that, I can’t be missing those.”

The 36-hole Division 4 Lower Peninsula state finals begin June 11 at The Fortress in Frankenmuth.

Follow Andrew Rosenthal on Twitter @ByAndrewR

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