Four holes keep MCHS golfer from improving
For 14 holes of the state golf tournament Tuesday, Moffat County freshman golfer Meghan Innes played better than she had Monday. The other four holes were what cost her.
Innes, the first girls freshman golfer in Moffat County history to qualify for state, hoped to improve on her score of 101 from Day 1, but two holes with a nine and another with a 10 made that goal unreachable. She finished with a 106.
“There were some places I couldn’t get out of today,” Innes said. “It’s not a forgiving course when you reach the rough.”
The tall-grass rough of the Cotton Ranch Golf Course in Gypsum wasn’t something that Innes had experienced before. Coach Ann Marie Hamilton took the blame for not having Innes prepared for the unforgiving rough.
“I made some coaching errors because I didn’t prepare her for a couple of spots,” Hamilton said. “There were shots here that we never see at this course. The team will benefit from our experience here because I now know what to teach.”
Not all was lost in Innes’ first state tournament.
She shot a 46 on the front nine, which included a near-birdie on the par-three eight.
“On the eighth, you hit off a cliff down to the green,” she said. “My chip almost rolled into the hole. I was happy with my first nine.”
Going into Tuesday, Innes was in 36th place. The field didn’t move around her Tues–day as she finished in 38th out of 71 golfers.
Innes finished sixth from the Western Slope.
“I learned a little more about my mental approach,” she said. “There are still times when I don’t recover well.”
As a freshman, Innes hopes to have three more attempts. Three of the five golfers from the Western Slope who finished in front of her were seniors.
“There were a lot of sophomores and juniors,” she said. “But I didn’t talk to any freshman.”
Mullen’s Ashley Tait won her third state golf crown by shooting a course record 70 on Monday and a 71 on Tuesday. Aspen senior Kristin Walla, who won the Class 4A Western Regional, finished second, 10 strokes back from Tait, with a two-day score of 151.
Mullen won the team title for the fifth-consecutive year.
Nine golfers reached the 70s on the course. Hamilton said a lot of coaches were talking about the difficulty of how the Cotton Ranch played.
“The girls were teeing off from a lot of the guys’ tees,” she said. “The discussion was about how the course was long for a girls tournament.”
The course was set at 5,813 yards, which is 300 yards longer than Black Canyon Golf Course, where the Western Regional was held.
“It was the most challenging course I’ve played,” Innes said. “I might come back and play it this summer just to see.”
David Pressgrove can be reached at 824-7031 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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