Moffat County golfers stay the course with steady finish at state
For the Craig Press
For two players in their first year golfing competitively, Moffat County High School’s Reagan Hafey and Taylor Powell couldn’t have asked for a better trajectory for their game.
Hafey and Powell wrapped up the girls golf season Tuesday, completing a two-day format at the 3A State Championships at Pueblo’s Elmwood Golf Course.
Hafey shot a 203 total to tie for 34th out of 84, and Powell tied for 50th with a 211.
The pair of Bulldog golfers got to Pueblo Saturday to get in nearly 18 holes ahead of the official Sunday practice round, and by their Monday morning start they were quite familiar with the links.
“They were pretty comfortable with that course,” said coach Tim Adams. “It’s a very nice course, very well-maintained. I felt like it was really fair. There weren’t any water hazards, very few if any hazards.”
Between Monday and Tuesday, both players had a better opening day, Adams added, partly due to the climate.
“The conditions were perfect. It was 73 degrees, kinda cloudy, just a nice, cool day,” he said.
Hafey’s first round saw her placed 28th overall with a 98, breaking even on Elmwood’s first, seventh and eleventh holes. Apart from a couple plus-4 scores, she kept her head throughout the day.
“It was a fairly open course, really forgiving,” Hafey said.
Powell was tied for 45th after the first day, and though her 104 total included some shaky moments, she shot par on the fourth, seventh and 15th holes.
“I’m a lot better in cooler weather. When it’s hot, that makes a difference,” Powell said.
The second day at Pueblo saw the summertime weather in full blast, and Adams could tell the difference.
“The first day they were both really putting well, quite as well today,” Adams said Tuesday. “They were hitting the ball pretty accurately and didn’t put themselves in a lot of really difficult situations.”
While Powell added only a few strokes to her Monday score to shoot 107 Tuesday, Hafey saw much more strife in the latter half of the tourney.
“My drives have been really good the last couple days, but my putting I struggled a lot with,” she said. “The front nine I really didn’t do well with, but once you’re struggling there’s not much you can do about it, so you just have to forget about it and move on.”
Though she shot 56 on the front, a better run on the back nine came to 49 for a 105 total.
“The second day you got paired with girls who shot around your score the first day, so everybody you played with you were at the same level, which was really nice,” Hafey said. “It kept the pace of play going.”
Hafey and Powell — who finished up their sophomore and freshman years, respectively — were the first members of the MCHS girls golf program to compete at the state level since Katelyn Peroulis in 2014.
MCHS players aided Adams with a junior program at Yampa Valley Golf Course earlier this month, which Powell said was fun and beneficial.
Powell said she is already setting goals for next year she’ll be working on this summer.
“Breaking 100 a couple times would be good,” she said.
After taking athletes to the big-time tournament in both of his first two years coaching for the boys fall season — which will start up again in early August — first-year girls coach Adams said he is looking forward to being back at state next spring.
“I’m really looking forward to next year, all those girls worked really hard this year,” Adams said. “We’ve really got something to build for this program on so we’re consistently sending kids to state. I’d really like to get to the point where we qualify as a team, but it starts small. Fortunately we’ve got kids who really are not allergic to working and are willing to work on their game. I’m excited for them.”
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