Photo by Jenny Kirk
Dawson-Boyd’s Tyler Lund hits a putt during the Class A meet on Wednesday in Becker.
BECKER ― A pair of medals and a lot of good memories, experience and friendships are what area athletes took away from the second and final day of the State Class A Golf Meet on Wednesday at Pebble Creek Golf Club in Becker.
Murray County Central’s Abby Hamman and Dawson-Boyd’s Tyler Lund both came away with seventh-place medals after the two-day competition.
“It feels really good,” Hamman said. “Going fro 15th last year to getting a seventh-place medal this year is really nice.”
Hamman shot a 37-41 (78) round on Day 1 and followed up with a 42-44 (86).
“My round (Wednesday) wasn’t very good, to be honest,” she said.. “Everything really went wrong. My putting was really good, though, and that saved me a lot of holes. But my driving ― I didn’t use my driver on a lot of holes.”
Lund was also pleased to finish out the competition with a medal.
“It feels good,” he said. “I’m a little sad it’s over, but I’m happy with how it happened.”
Lund carded a pair of 39s on Day 2 and finished with 153.
“It was a stressful day,” Lund said. “My parents were up at 4 in the morning they were so stressed, too. But it turned out OK.”
MCC’s Tyler Groves finished in 12th place after firing a two-day 158. Groves shot a 38-42 (80) after tallying a 38-40 (78) on Day 1.
Minneota’s Nolan Boerboom finished in a tie for 13th place. Boerboom shot a 159 ― 36-39 on Tuesday and 41-43 on Wednesday.
“My round didn’t go as good as (Tuesday), but I got here so I can’t be disappointed,” he said. “The pin placements on the greens were very, very, very hard and then the greens, they sped them up since (Tuesday). Putting is a big part of the game and I didn’t have it (Wednesday).
Boerboom said he was appreciative of the opportunity, experience and support.
“The weather was picture perfect ― well, not Monday, but for the meet days it was really nice,” Boerboom said. “I went up with three coaches from our school (Greg Gile, Walker Hennen and Nicole Evers). We went and ate a lot. It was fun. It’s nice to have all that support.”
Boerboom qualified for state last year as a freshman and while he didn’t meet some of his goals, he’s optimistic about getting another chance.
“My goal this year (at state) was to shoot two scores in the 70s,” he said. “I didn’t do that. Hopefully I can get back here two more years. And I guess next year, that will probably be my goal again. It’s just good that you can always get better.”
Lakeview golfer Jarrett Geihl and Sirada Chitthong both finished in 23rd place. Chitthong dropped eight strokes on the second day (40-47) compared to the opening day of competition (49-46), for a total of 182.
Geihl shot a 82 (42-40) on Wednesday for two-day total of 161.
“It went very well for me,” Geihl said. “That first round I thought went really well. I made some long putts and made some good shots. But everything was going right and it was bothering me, but I kept my head in the game and figured it out. Then my shots started going straight.”
Geihl said he hit the ball more straight again on Day 2.
“My long game was better,” he said. “But then I couldn’t chip and my putting was just alright. For the most part it was good. You just have to keep your head in the game and stay with it. Then everything will pan out for you.” a lot of other area athletes, Geihl had a lot of family support. Geihl’s family calls him the “Come-back Kid” because he nearly didn’t even get to participate in golf this season after severely injuring his knee during a dodge ball tournament in November. The senior decided to forgo surgery and take the risk by trying physical therapy first.
“I had to do everything they said to do,” he said.
With all he went through to rehab his knee, Geihl said he’s grateful to be competing, especially at the state level.
“It’s very awesome,” Geihl said. “If I had the chance to go back, I would come back in a heartbeat. It was so fun. I definitely had a good time. It’s fun golfing with people you’ve never golfed with. That’s the coolest part. It’s kind of a once-in-a-lifetime thing. The course was also amazing.”
Canby golfer Jake Wagner finished in a tie for 32nd place. Wagner carded a 169, picking up some extra strokes on Wednesday. He shot a 40-41 (81) in Day 1 and 46-42 (88) the following day.
Hendrick’s Kaylee Johnson recorded a two-day 193, tying for 33rd place. Johnson fired a 44-45 (89) and 51-53 (104). Cousin Sophie Johnson finished in a tie for 57th place after shooting a two-day score of 210 (52-55 and 53-50).
Westbrook-Walnut Grove junior Andrew Quade finished with a score of 179, taking 53rd place overall. Quade shot three 46s and a 41 to close out the tournament.
Wabasso senior Jacob Iverson closed out his high school golfing career with a 294, good for 72nd place.
“I wasn’t coming here expecting to win,” Iverson said. “I came here for fun, I guess. I tried my best ― I wasn’t exactly happy with my scores ― but I did what I could.”
Iverson shot a 48-52 on Day 1 and 45-49 the second day.
“My experience was great,” he said. “We had beautiful weather except for our practice round, which was not good. It rained all day Monday. But overall, state was really cool ― everything from the banquet to the rounds of golf to meeting nice people. It was great.”
Iverson said he preferred the white course over the red one but that he enjoyed the opportunity to play an outstanding course like Pebble Creek.
“I definitely like the white better, which for me is the back nine,” he said. “I struggled with the front nine. Overall, I like the course. It’s nice. It’s a lot better than our little dinky courses down by us in all the small towns.”
While Iverson said he lost a few golf balls, he joked that he didn’t lose any strokes by swearing at least.
“I lost a few golf balls, so it cost me a few penalty strokes, but not one caught me cursing or anything,” Iverson said “There’s a rule against swearing. It’s a two-stroke penalty. If your teammates call you out for swearing, it’s two strokes.”
While Hamman led the Rebel squad, Amber Boock carded a 199, improving on her score in the Day 2 competition. Boock fired a 97 (46-51) on Wednesday and finished in a tie for 41st place.
“My rounds went a lot better (Wednesday) than (Tuesday),” Boock said. “My chipping and putting really saved me. I had a hard time getting off the tee box.”
Boock likened the course to the one in Worthington.
“The greens are really fast,” she said.
Paige Behrends was consistent, shooting three 52s to go along with a 49 over the course of two days. Behrends closed out the competition with a score of 205, good for 52nd place.
Vanessa Dahlgren finished in a tie for 64th place after firing a two-day total of 213. After shooting a 53-55 (108) on Day 1, Dahlgren dropped three strokes on the second day.
Cierra Tutt recorded a 223 and finished in a tie for 76th place. After coming in with a 109 on Tuesday, Tutt added a few more strokes to her total on Day 2 (114).
Kylie Frisk put in a two-round total of 239 and finished in 82nd place.
“It went pretty good,” Frisk said about her Day 2 round. “It was way better than (Tuesday). My drives went well. At the beginning, I struggled with my chipping and putting and then with my fairway shots the last part.”
The Rebels also qualified for state as a team, finishing in sixth place with a two-day compiled score of 781. Lac qui Parle Valley won the state girls championship with 714 points, followed by Fillmore Central (715), Park Christian (723), BOLD (726) and Springfield (764).
“I like going as a team because it’s a lot more fun than just going as an individual,” Hamman said.
With no graduating seniors on the team, the Rebel golfers are optimistic about getting back to state next year.
“I hope to come back next year, probably as a team,” said Frisk, who just finished her freshman year.
Boock, also a soon-to-be sophomore, agreed.
“I thought the tournament was really fun and I want to come back next year,” she said.
As a team, the Rebels took seventh place with a combined score of 726. Sleepy Eye United and Mounds Park Academy tied for first place with 641, followed by North Woods (658), Ottertail Central Bulldogs (682), LQPV (704) and Fertile-Beltrami (710).
While Groves led the team, Jack Pierson followed behind, shooting a two-day score of 180. Pierson tied for 54th place overall with a Day 1 round of 42-51 (93) and second day score of 41-46 (87).
“I personally didn’t play very well, but we shot pretty well as a team,” Pierson said. “I was pretty happy. It’s always fun. It’s definitely the biggest tournament of the year. You work all year really, just thinking about this one.”
Cole Ahlers tied for 69th place after firing a 189. Ahlers shot a 51-48 (99) on the first day and a 43-47 (90) on the final day.
Dawson Tutt tied for 76th place with a 199. Tutt carded a 40-55 and a 49-55 to close out the competition.
While Groves graduated, the other three MCC competitors are underclassmen.
“I’ll definitely try to be back next year,” Pierson said.
When asked if he thought it would get any easier, Pierson didn’t hesitate as he said, “No. Definitely not.”