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McKee, Cuomo make the cut; advance to final round of 1A State Golf Tournament | Golf
— This updated version corrects McKee's total score in the second paragraph.
Tuesday’s first round of the 1A State Golf Tournament featured all of the intensity and drama of golf competition.
But the real story was the one behind the scenes. It was Tyler McKee, calling his father, Phil McKee -- being treated for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma at Swedish Hospital -- to let him know he shot 80 and made the cut. The Friday Harbor senior finished tied for 35th; Zach Wanderscheid of Goldendale led the field with 65.
It was first alternate Megan Cuomo, going to the tournament on hope, being called up in place of a golfer who missed the tournament because of illness. The Friday Harbor junior made the cut, shooting 92 to finish tied for 16th. Alyssa Maine of Freeman led with 80.
It was alternate Quinn Bune, waiting at the first tee for six hours, standing ready in the event a slot opened up for him. It didn’t, but the good-spirited junior went from golfer to gallery to root for his teammates.
Play resumes Wednesday; Cuomo tees off at 8:10 a.m., McKee at 9:30.
Skies were clear, there was no breeze and the temperature was 75 to 80 on Tuesday at Columbia Point Golf Course in Richland -- ranked fourth among Washington’s courses by Western Golf Alliance. Columbia Point measures 6,571 yards from the championship tees and features mounded, rolling fairways and large, undulating greens.
“I could have shot better on the front nine,” said McKee, who shot 43 on the front and 37 on the back. “My putting was always a half-inch off. They weren’t dropping.” McKee's strategy for Wednesday's final round: He'll play more aggressively and “try to go for it all.”
Cuomo teed off midday when the day was warmest and played consistently over 18 holes, shooting 46-46. Wednesday’s weather conditions: A high of 70, low of 49 with a chance of thunderstorms.
“I play better when it’s warm,” she said.