Alistair Docherty called his final high school golf tournament bittersweet.
A senior from Union, Docherty finished fifth at the Class 4A state tournament in May, seven strokes off the lead.
A fine finish, but a golfer is rarely satisfied.
“I really wanted that win really badly. I just couldn’t get the putts to drop,” Docherty said. “I hit maybe two bad tee shots all week. I was giving myself opportunities to make putts, and I just couldn’t get it done.”
He made enough putts all year, though, to be The Columbian’s All-Region boys golfer of the year.
Back in the fall, Docherty won his second consecutive district tournament and he also led the Titans to the Class 4A Greater St. Helens League season title and then the team title at district. By the spring, he transformed into a top five golfer in all of 4A boys golf.
“I did end up the top senior (at state). That’s something to look at, something proud to look at,” he said.
He also accomplished his goal of repeating at district, albeit not the way he had hoped. Battle Ground’s Chad
Hall was penalized two strokes on the final day and Docherty won by one.
“Chad definitely played better than me,” Docherty said.
Docherty also knows what it feels like to be penalized. It happened to him when he was an eighth-grader at a juniors event. Since then, he has immersed himself into the rule book. Golf will be a part of his life forever, he said, and he wants to stay informed.
In the fall, Docherty will take his knowledge to Chico State in California, to play for one of the top NCAA Division II programs.
“I want to be able to play in most, if not all, of the tournaments my freshman year. That’s the main goal,” he said.
• Finished fifth at the Class 4A state tournament in May, seven strokes off the lead. He was the top senior placer in the event.
• Won his second consecutive district championship back in October.
• Fired a 3-under-par 34 in a match against Skyview, leading his team to victory and the Class 4A GSHL title.
More about Alistair
• Musical tastes: “All kinds of music. I’m really into country right now, and I’m not sure why.”
• Favorite movie: Anchorman. You stay classy, Alistair.
• Favorite book: “Golf is not of game of Perfect” by Dr. Bob Rotella. “I could read that any time. I’ve got in in audio and I sometimes listen to it in the car on the way to tournaments.”
Next year and beyond
• Docherty is headed to Chico State in California to study business management and play for the Wildcats. The team, which just finished second in NCAA Division II, is welcoming seven freshmen. Docherty’s long-term goal is to make it to the PGA Tour.
“If that doesn’t work out, I’ll always want to be around golf. My life is golf.”
“It’s a challenge. It’s fun. There is never the same shot. There is always something different. Every shot is a challenge.”
on the glory of golf
Rest of All-Region team
• Eddie Abellar, fr., Union: Class 4A Greater St. Helens League first-team selection.
• Diego De La Torre, fr., Hockinson: Placed ninth at Class 2A state tournament.
• Brett Johnson, sr., Ridgefield: Class 1A district champion; placed seventh at state tournament.
• Chad Hall, jr., Battle Ground: Class 4A district runner-up, made cut at 4A state.
• Nick Huff, jr., Hockinson: 2A Greater St. Helens League player of the year.
• Taylor Smith, jr., Mountain View: Placed fourth at Class 3A state tournament.