Long day for Bulldogs golf team
Coach Ken Harjes just knew it was going to be a long day.
“It was the first time in 25 years we had a break down,” he said of the trip to Battlement Mesa. “Maybe it was a little omen we weren’t going to play well.”
The Bulldogs didn’t play well, shooting 262 in the first tournament of the year.
“We played terrible,” he said. “They’re all hitting the ball well, we’re just missing greens, not getting up an down and our short game isn’t good.”
Junior Kaleb McKey led the way with an 84. Senior Zach Haddan and Junior Andy Sperl both shot 89. Sophomore Shawn Brookshire finished one shot worse, and Sophomore Billy Ivy finished with a 97.
The team as a whole finished 13th out of 18 with a team score of 262.
Early season combined with inexperience are what caused the Bulldogs trouble, Harjes said.
“Golf is such a different game in that every course is different,” he said. “Different look and feel. (Our golfers) don’t have a lot of experience at other courses.”
Many of the Bulldogs, Harjes said, said the greens at Battlement Mesa were slow compared with their home course.
“(Battlement Mesa) greens are enormous compared to ours,” he said.
Harjes said that although the team didn’t play as well as he had hoped, the Battlement Mesa course played tough.
Harjes said only six golfers broke 80, and the winning team, Montrose, shot 240. Last year’s regional tournament was held at Battlement Mesa, and the qualifying team score to go to state was 235.
“(Our score) is a long way from 240,” he said. “No excuse, we’re better than 262.”
Thursday’s tournament gave Harjes a chance to gauge what his team needs to work on.
“We need some time on the range,” he said. “I mean we haven’t had a practice yet.”
Harjes said practice before Monday’s tournament in Grand Junction will focus on the short game and long irons.
Despite the high scores, Harjes said the team’s spirits were upbeat. He also said it gave them an idea of where they need to be when regionals come in September.
“(Our golfers) are disappointed,” he said. “They know they’re better than that. We’ve got to perform if we’re going to be a factor. They were upbeat. They’re competitors, and they don’t like to lose.”
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