After he didn't make it to the Division I district tournament last year, Jared Wissinger of the Hilliard Davidson High School boys golf team decided to step up his dedication to the game.

After he didn't make it to the Division I district tournament last year, Jared Wissinger of the Hilliard Davidson High School boys golf team decided to step up his dedication to the game.

The work paid off last Friday and Saturday when Wissinger became the second player at Davidson to compete in the Division I state tournament. He shot a 160 to finish tied for 21st. St. Charles' Michael Ricaurte won the title with a 144.

"It's an honor just to make it here with all of the best players in Ohio," Wissinger said. "It's really nerve-wracking to be out there at first. Pretty much once you're off, it's like any other round of golf."

Wissinger shot an 84 on the first day and rebounded with a 76. The 84 was a season-high score for Wissinger.

"I picked a bad day to have my worst round of the season," Wissinger said. "Take those four holes away and sub in par and I'm around 75."

The improvement Wissinger showed on the second day of competition isn't unlike the improvement he showed from last year to this season. Wissinger averaged an 81 last year and dropped that number to 75.

Wissinger's ascent to a state-qualifying golfer started last season when the Wildcats needed a supporting cast for top golfer Clay Rice, a 2010 graduate. Rice entered last season as a known commodity, and it was questionable who would help him and Wissinger stepped up to the task.

Wissinger quickly ascended to one of Davidson's best golfers. He closed out August with a team-best 75 at the Hiawatha Invitational and followed that with a 36 in a win over Olentangy in the first event of September.

But last season still ended in disappointment when Wissinger failed to advance past the sectional.

Motivated by the disappointment, Wissinger changed his training regimen in the summer to include practice four days a week for four hours. The offseason before that, he typically spent two hours, twice a week practicing. He also played baseball, a sport he eventually stopped playing.

Wissinger won seven tournaments during the regular season and had top-three finishes in three others.

He shot a 73 at the district tournament at Apple Valley on Oct. 12. Wissinger had the third-best score behind Phillips (68) and Huggins (72) to advance.

"I've never had a golfer drop seven strokes in one year," said coach Monte Rhoden, who just finished his 20th season as coach. "Shooting that 73 to get out (of the district tournament at Apple Valley on Oct. 12) against some of the best golfers in central Ohio, which is like a state tournament, is a heck of an accomplishment."

St. Charles won the team title with a 610, finishing well ahead of runner-up Cleveland St. Ignatius (621). Dublin Jerome was third (636) with OCC-Central Division rival Dublin Coffman fourth (648).