Eagle lands Innes in first place

Golf team earns top 4A honors

For 14 holes, Meghan Innes was playing bogey golf, then a 30-foot putt turned her day around.

Innes sunk a 30-footer on the 15th hole for an eagle, her first in competition, and it propelled her to a first-place finish in the tournament with an 84.

"(The eagle) was a huge confidence builder," the Moffat County sophomore said. "I'd been putting bad all day, and then I hit that one, and I got pars on my final three holes."

Innes' finished the first nine with a 45 and came back with a 39 on the back nine. Her 84 led the Bulldogs to a second-place finish overall and first in the Class 4A division with a 270. They were five strokes away from Class 5A's Grand Junction Central.

"We've never been that close to Central before," Innes said. "It was a good day."

Innes and junior Amber Nicholson have been rotating as Moffat's top golfer. When Innes has a good day, Nicholson is a little off and vice versa.

"I don't know why that happens," coach Ann Marie Hamilton said. "They do a flip-flop almost every time, and hopefully, down the road, they'll both play well on the same day."

Nicholson, like Innes, golfed better on the back nine.

"I was too mental the front nine," Nicholson said. "I was happy the way I finished because of how bad I started."

Nicholson finished with a 92, which was third best among Class 4A golfers and sixth overall.

"I really wanted to break 90 on my home course," she said. "But with the way the front nine went, I'm happy with a 92."

Moffat's third and fourth golfers have a similar performance relationship to Innes and Nicholson. When senior Amy Coulter has a good day, senior Chelsey Herod seems to be a bit off.

On Monday, it was Coulter's day. Despite receiving a cortisone shot in her left shoulder, she turned in a career-best 94.

"I had to leave the Montrose tournament because my shoulder hurt so bad," she said. "It felt better today, but I had to learn how to hit the ball with not having much feeling in my arm."

Hamilton said that on Monday, she had to work with Coulter to keep her shoulder down during her shot.

The work and some good vibes from spectators helped Coulter.

"My family was there and they were my lucky charm," she said. "I putted well, and I was able to get out of the sand successfully a couple of times today."

Coulter was eighth overall and fifth in the 4A grouping.

Herod didn't look like she was having much fun out on the course, but even after hitting a shot off of a tree on the 13th hole, she finished with a 101.

"I didn't smile much out there," she said. "My chipping kept me in it though. I was able to get pars on holes 10, 11 and 12, which kept my score down."

Moffat's fifth golfer, sophomore Natasha Chapman, had her best day of the season with a 117.

The Bulldogs won three consecutive tournaments since Thurs--day. In Montrose on Thursday, Innes shot an 85 to finish second. The team beat Rifle by four strokes, 279 to 283. On Friday, Innes' 91 and Nicholson's 92 helped the Bulldogs to a first-place finish.

Moffat County remained ranked second in Class 4A by the Rocky Mountain News this week. The team is scheduled to travel to Aspen on Thursday, but because three days of school were missed in a row, the entire team may not make the trip.

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