AURORA | Devyn Solano played much better in his second trip to the Class 5A boys state golf tournament, but he couldn’t help but think what could have been.

In the midst of a fantastic final round Tuesday at Murphy Creek Golf Course, the Grandview senior was derailed on his final three holes by a fierce wind that took him out of contention for the individual state title won by Regis Jesuit’s Spencer Painton.

Coming into the day at 3-over-par, Solano knew it was a long shot to catch Painton. but he did his best, as he got as low as 6-under with just three holes remaining. That’s when the wind began to whip and took its toll as Solano bogeyed No. 16 and No. 17 and had a double bogey on 18 to finish 2-under.

“I said to myself ‘I’m not going out like I did last year at state,’” said Solano, who drastically improved on a disappointing 40th-place showing in 2012 and was Aurora’s top individual not from Regis Jesuit.

“Compared to last year, I’m happy,” he continued.

The last three holes plagued Solano in both rounds, as he shot a combined 8-over-par on Nos. 16, 17 and 18, but was 7-under on all the other holes.

In his second round, Solano birdied three straight holes on the front nine and had three in a four-hole stretch on the back nine before reaching the closing three holes.

Solano still didn’t expect to catch Painton, who was also a freshman when Painton was at Grandview before he transferred to Regis Jesuit.

“If I take out the three holes from yesterday and today and even just made par on them, I would be right there, but Spencer deserved to win,” said Solano, who finished tied with Boulder’s Grant Rogers for fourth.

“I said at the beginning of the year, anybody who wanted to win state would have to go through Spencer. I’m just glad to be up here (getting a medal) with these guys who are not only some of the best players in this state, but some of the best in other states, too.”

Solano finished fifth in the individual Centennial League standings through five tournaments, but got the better of all the other league players at state. Arapahoe’s Sam Marley and Cherry Creek’s Kobe Padilla were three strokes behind him.

The state performance might also help Solano find a program interested in giving him a college scholarship to play golf. He’s still weighing his options.

Cherokee Trail freshman Bradley Scalia turned heads by shooting even par in the first round, which had him sitting fifth individually. He was 4-over on the second day, but met his goal of a top-20 finish by tying for 17th.

In his first career trip to the state tournament, Overland senior Joe Slocum shot matching 81s to finish in a tie for 59th in a group that also included Solano’s Grandview teammate, Kyle Carr, who had rounds of 80 and 82.

The tournament marked a significant learning experience for two young Smoky Hill players, as both sophomore Paul Cleveland and freshman Kyle Colen rebounded from opening round struggles to post significantly better results in the final round.

Cleveland shaved eight strokes from his first day performance with a closing round 80, while Colen was 11 strokes better than his opening round with a 90.


Final round Oct. 1 at Murphy Creek G.C.

Team scores: 1. REGIS JESUIT 212-213 — 425; 2. Ralston Valley 221-227 — 448; 3. Cherry Creek 222-228 — 450; 4. Legacy 225-230 — 455; T5. Heritage 230-226 — 456; T5. Fairview 225-231 — 456; T7. Boulder 232-227 — 459; T7. Grand Junction 230-229 — 459; 9. Arapahoe 238-223 — 461; 10. Columbine 229-242 — 471; 11. Fort Collins 236-237 — 473; 12. Douglas County 228-250 — 478; 13. Fossil Ridge 247-232 — 479; 14. Monarch 243-248 — 491; 15. Loveland 251-251 — 502

Top 10 individuals (par 72-72 — 144): 1. SPENCER PAINTON (REGIS JESUIT) 66-72 — 138; T2. JAKE KELLEY (REGIS JESUIT) 71-69 — 140; T2. Li Chen (Legacy) 67-73 — 140; T4. DEVYN SOLANO (GRANDVIEW) 75-70 — 145; T4. Grant Rogers (Boulder) 78-67 — 145; 6. AJ Ott (Fort Collins) 73-73 — 146; T7. CHRIS KORTE (REGIS JESUIT) 75-72 — 147; T7. Troy Dangler (Fruita Monument) 78-69 — 147; T7. Donny Kinnaman (Grand Junction) 72-75 — 147; T10. Hunter Lee (Heritage) 75-73 — 148; T10. Neil Tillman (Ralston Valley) 74-74 — 148; T10. Sam Marley (Arapahoe) 74-74 — 148; T10. Kobe Padilla (Cherry Creek) 73-75 — 148

Aurora results: 1. Spencer Painton (Regis Jesuit) 66-72 — 138; T2. Jake Kelley (Regis Jesuit) 71-69 — 140; T4. Devyn Solano (Grandview) 75-70 — 145; T7. Chris Korte (Regis Jesuit) 75-72 — 147; T17. Bradley Scalia (Cherokee Trail) 72-78 — 150; T26. Jack Lazzeri (Regis Jesuit) 78-75 — 153; T59. Joe Slocum (Overland) 81-81 — 162; T59. Kyle Carr (Grandview) 80-82 — 162; T68. Paul Cleveland (Smoky Hill) 88-80 — 168; 84. Kyle Colen (Smoky Hill) 101-90 — 191

Courtney Oakes is Sports Editor of the Aurora Sentinel. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or Twitter: @aurorasports. Facebook: Aurora Prep Sentinel

Courtney Oakes is sports Editor and photographer with Sentinel Colorado. A Denver East High School alum. He came to the Sentinel in 2001 and since then has received a number of professional awards from...