At this point in the season, Madison Central coach Kyle Congleton isn't too concerned with where his team ends up on the leaderboard.

His focus is on the development of his players -- which include three sophomores, a freshman and an eighth-grader.

"We are moving in the right direction," Congleton said. "As a coach, that's all you can ask for. You never want to see your team going the other way. The last three tournaments, our team scores have gotten better."

On Monday, the Indians posted a season-low score of 297 in the Madison Central Invitational at Gibson Bay Golf Course.

Central finished fifth in a loaded field that featured some of the top teams in the state.

Taylor County took the title with a stunning performance, shooting a 278 (-10).

St. Xavier (283) was second, Christian Academy of Louisville (289) was third and North Oldham (291).

Taylor County's Luke Coyle claimed the individual championship with a -8, 64.

Hayes Mason, also of Taylor County, took second with a -7, 65.

Madison Central's Clay Pendergrass, St. Xavier's Campbell Kremer and Lafayette's Henry Lane tied for third at -4, 68.

Pendergrass, a freshman, got off to a great start. He was three-under after five holes and made the turn at -2.

The freshman finished with five birdies and just one bogey.

"I left a few shots out there, but you can't be too upset about a 68," Pendergrass said. "It was a good day. We need to keep this momentum going."

Cooper Eberle had birdies on No. 2 and 10 and shot a +1, 73.

Gavin McKune was two-under after three holes and went on to shoot a +6, 78.

Warren Thomis had one birdie (No. 13) and shot a +6, 78.

Blake McGinn shot a +17, 89.

"I have nothing bad to say at all," Congleton said. "They are working hard. Good golf is what I'm seeing. We have the potential to drop six or seven shots a round and if we do that we will be right there with anybody."

The Indians have faced state tournament-level competition in almost every event they've played this season.

And they've held their own, despite their youth and inexperience.

On Saturday, Central took sixth in the Kentucky Invitational Tournament, which also featured St. Xavier and Christian Academy of Louisville.

The Indians will face the same kind of powerhouse programs many more times over the next two months as they try to earn another trip the Kentucky High School Athletic Association State Tournament in Bowling Green.

"That's the main goal," Pendergrass said.

The Indians had a second team in the tournament as well.

The Madison Central White team shot a +46, 334 and finished 14th.

Bryce Snapp and Jacob Aldridge both shot an 80. Ayden Shepherd and Eli Stuart both shot 87 and Radney Bales finished with a 99.

Several other Madison County golfers competed in the event as individuals.

Berea Community's Jacob Robinson shot a 91.

Central's Reece Keaton shot a 125 and Central's Levi Darmadji fired a +36, 108.

Central is set to return to action Saturday at the Dunbar Classic at Kearny Hill Golf Links.

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