Lena & Oconto Claim Conference CrownsIssue Date: May 18, 2022
Lena Locks Up M&O Title With Second Place Finish; STAA's Bailey is P.O.Y.
Crivitz won the event, but Lena locked up the M&O Conference title with a second-place finish at Oak Crest, hosted by Niagara, on Friday.
The Wolverines shot a 168 to beat Lena by 11 strokes, but the Wildcats came into the event with a big lead in the conference after winning the first four M&O tour stops of the season. Lena finished with a total team score of 1,089, ahead of the Wolverines' 1,136.
Lena put four golfers on the M&O Conference first and second teams. Sophomores Braden McVane and Drake Dionne were the conference's second and third-best golfers, respectively. Mason Simonson and Evan Vanderzanden were second teamers.
McVane earned medalist honors with a 39 on Friday. He came on strong late in the season, shooting two 39s and a 40 in his last three nine-hole rounds after a pair of 44s and a 46 in his first three of the season. On Friday, he shot a 39.
Dionne shot a 44 Friday, Simsonson and Vanderzanden shot 48s, and Mason Spice carded a 51.
Lena coach John Moe knew his team was going to be special from the first meet. The Wildcats shot a 189 to win the meet by 26 strokes, but it was his team's attitude afterwards that excited him.
"Our goal at the start of the year was to contend for conference. We had all four golfers back plus we were adding Drake Dionne, who I felt could play with some of the best kids in the conference," Moe said. "The thing that encouraged me was we won the first conference meet, and to a man, they said we can all play better. I knew right away their mindset was in the right place."
The Wildcats have just one senior, Simonson. He had played as the Wildcats' number one golfer since his freshman year, often outmatched but always willing to take on the challenge, Moe said.
This year, McVane stepped into the top spot and took some of the pressure off Simonson, and Simonson responded well.
"I personally would like to thank my lone senior Mason Simonson," Moe said. "He didn't sulk. He made the move and played some of his best golf."
Vanderzanden played five for most of the year, but played well enough to earn a second team spot, giving the Wildcats a lot of good depth.
"All my players worked hard last summer and it really paid off," Moe said. "The future looks bright for Lena golf. I have some very talented freshmen that will be battling for roster spots."
Three Crivitz golfers earned M&O honors. Jack Bauer and Joey Pickett made the first team and Kaden Klaver made the second team.
On Friday, Klaver shot a 41, followed by 42s from Pickett and Bauer, a 43 from TJ Mueller, and a 48 by Jack Kosmecki.
Coleman finished third at Oak Crest and third in the conference with a 1,184. Kamron Kostrova was a first-team finisher. He shot a 46 on Friday.
Liam Zeitler led the team with a 44, including birdies on the ninth and fourth holes. Evan Hockers shot a 49, Lincoln Henry shot a 53, and Aubrey Bintz shot a 55.
Oneida was fourth at Oak Crest and fourth in the conference. Jonas Johnson made the conference second team. He shot a 46 at Oak Crest.
STAA shot a 220 on Friday, led by the conference's top golfer, Kaiden Bailey. Bailey shot a 42 to tie for third at Oak Crest, but he shot a medalist round at three conference meets this year. His total score of 196, including dropping his worst score of 45 at Parkway in the first meet of the year, was 10 strokes better than the conference's number two golfer, McVane.
Theron Thayer made the second team in the 10th spot. He shot a 43, one stroke back from Bailey, at Oak Crest. It was Thayer's best round of the season.
"It comes at a great time heading into the postseason," STAA coach George Hayes said.
Tayen Schwartz shot a 65, Chase Gromala carded a 70, and Brady Smith recorded a 73. It was also Tayen Schwartz's best round of the year.
Gillett was sixth in the conference. The Tigers didn't have any golfers at Friday's event.
Niagara's Nate Olsen shot a 60.
Oconto Wins Packerland Title;
Peshtigo's Bauman Earns MVP
Oconto put a bow on the Packerland Conference golf title by tying Peshtigo for the lead at the Packerland Conference Championship on Thursday.
Playing at Wander Springs, the Blue Devils and Bulldogs tied for the top spot with a 372 over 18 holes. The Packerland title is a season-long points total, with the top team at each event taking the most points.
The Blue Devils won the first two events of the year at Cherry Hills and Little River. After Peshtigo won the Vernon Hills meet in the third tour stop, Oconto won at the Orchards in stop number four. Sturgeon Bay and Southern Door won the final two nine-hole events of the year.
On Thursday, Christian Koch led the way with an 87, followed by a 93 from Josh Maynard. Carter Koch carded a 95 and Drew Reinhardt scored a 97. David Westenberg shot a 129.
Maynard and Christian Koch both shot 46s on the front nine. Maynard shot par on three holes on the back nine and finished with a 47, while Koch shot a 41, the second-best score of any golfer on the back nine. He hit for four pars, and didn't have any hole with worse than a bogey.
This year was a well-balanced year on the links in the Packerland. Four different schools won at least one meet.
"The other schools in the conference really made us earn this conference championship so I'm very proud of my team," Oconto coach Rick Sherman said. "We have received tremendous senior leadership from Josh, Christian, and David. First year players Drew and Carter have made us a complete team."
Christian Koch made the Packerland all-conference first team, scoring a 308 combined score over the course of the season's top five tour stops and his conference championship score. That was the third-best total in the conference.
His top nine-hole round was at Idlewild, where he shot a 43 to tie for medalist honors.
Sturgeon Bay, which won at Peninsula State Park, was second in the conference. Peshtigo took third. The Bulldogs didn't have a qualifying team score for three of seven meets on the year, and therefore didn't earn any points toward the conference championship in those events.
On Thursday, Peshtigo had a full team of five. Grant Bauman shot an 84 to lead all golfers, followed closely by Christian Boyle's 87. Logan Smith shot a 99, Alex Raygo scored a 102, and Travis Lund rounded out the scores with a 105.
Bauman was the Packerland's top player all season, with a score of 275 combined between the conference championship and his top five season rounds. The next-best golfer was Boyle with a 304.
Of six tour stops on the season, he won medalist honors in all six of them, including one tie at Idlewild. He was the only golfer in the conference to shoot under 40 in a round on the season, and he did it four times.
Bauman didn't have his best day on Thursday, but he was unphased by a few struggles from the tee box.
"Grant was having difficulty off the tee all day. I believe he hit only a couple fairways and very few greens in regulation. His score of 84, while much higher than his season average, was accomplished through some good recovery shots throughout the day," Dufrane said. "Grant has a way of not letting a difficult day get away from him and that shows some nice maturity on his part. That maturity, as much as anything, helped him win player of the year, and we are very excited for his future with Peshtigo Golf."
His back nine was his best stretch on Thursday, as he parred three holes and birdied the par-5 18th hole.
Boyle made the Packerland first team. Like Bauman, he was at his best on the home stretch. After a 46 on the front nine, his back nine score of 41 was tied for the second best back-nine of any golfer.
"I thought Christian had another very good day. His 41 on the back nine may have been the best ball striking I have seen from him this season," Peshtigo coach Jim Dufrane said. "His all-conference selection was well deserved this year. Christian has put a lot of work into his game since joining the golf team, and we are very happy to see that work pay off this year."
Raygo, Lund, and Smith stepped into the starting lineup this season after the departure of several of Peshtigo's top golfers last spring.
Raygo, a freshman, was on track for his low round of the year on Thursday before a pair of balls out of bounds on 17, Dufrane said.
"That turned a 46 or 47 into a 51 on the back nine. I really feel for Alex because he has worked so hard since coming to the team as a freshman," Dufrane said. "He still has some opportunities coming up to put a complete round together, and we feel he certainly can help us going forward."
Lund struggled on the front nine, shooting a 55 before turning things around a bit on the back half.
"He was able to put a very good back nine together and salvage his round," Dufrane said. "Travis works hard in practice and he is now just learning how to take what he learns in practice out to the course during competitive rounds."
Smith shot a very competitive 46 on the front nine, tied with Boyle and just two strokes back from Bauman, but a 53, which included three eights in the last four holes, spoiled his score a little bit.
"Logan had a very good round going after the front nine, but ran into a three hole stretch at the end of his round that left him feeling like he lost an opportunity today," Dufrane said. "He tends to be hard on himself, and he is learning as the season moves along that competitive golf requires much more discipline than what he has experienced in the past. He has the talent, we see it each time he goes out, but he needs to learn to manage his game to get the most out of each and every score. Logan is a great young player, and we see him continuing to improve each round."
Lena Wins M&O 18 Hole Match at Hunter's Glen
Lena stuck to its winning ways with a five-stroke victory at Hunter's Glen on Thursday.
The Wildcats narrowly edged the Crivitz Wolverines, who were playing on their home course. Lena shot a 339 to the Wolverines' 344.
Braden McVane's 79 was the second-best score of all competitors on the day. Drake Dionne and Mason Simonson recorded 85s, and Evan Vanderzanden posted a 90. KC Miller's 95 was dropped.
For Crivitz, Joey PIckett led with an 83, Jack Bauer shot an 84, Kaden Klaver shot an 88, and Jake Kosmecki's 89 rounded out the top four. TJ Mueller shot a 100.
Next was Coleman's 381. Kamron Kostrova carded an 86, with a 38 on the front nine. That was the second best score of all golfers on the front nine.
Evan Hockers shot a 93, Liam ZEitler carded a 99, Aubrey Bintz shot a 103, and Lincoln Henry shot a 108.
Oneida shot a 416 as a team, followed by a 442 from Saint Thomas Aquinas Academy.
STAA's Kaiden Bailey shot a 76 to earn medalist honors on the day. He shot a 36 on the front nine and followed it up with 40 on the back end. Hole nine was perhaps the standout, as he scored an eagle.
"Kaiden had a great round on Thursday. He was really solid off the tee most of the day," STAA coach George Hayes said. "He had some really nice holes."
Theron Thayer shot a 97, followed by 133 and 136 by Matthew Mushynski and Chase Gromala, respectively.
Gillett's Lars Grover shot a 95 to lead the Tigers. Devin Waranka (110), Taylor Schuster (121), Elsa Limberg (133) and Laney DeBauch (141) made up the rest of the Gillett five.
Niagara's lone golfer was Nate Olsen, who shot a 103.
Marines Finish Second at Twin Oaks Mega Meet
Marinette came up short of a conference win at the North Eastern Conference Mega Meet at Twin Oaks on Monday.
Wrightstown, led by medalist Grant Delsart's 76, powered to a 315, with three golfers shooting below 80. Delsart shot a hole-in-one on the eighth hole.
Marinette shot a 349. Keegan Polomis led the way with an 84, Trey Kretz shot an 86, and Kelten Hermanson shot an 89. Brady Eastman and Owen Hansen rounded out the Marinette scores with 90 and 92, respectively.
Oconto Falls shot a 375, good for fourth of 10 teams. Thomas Carmody shot a 91 and Kadyn Riel shot a 92. Rease Hodkiewicz carded a 93, Caden Leonhardt finished with a 99, and Trevor Metszler's 100 was dropped.
Marines Win WeatherShortened Oconto Falls Invite
Marinette and Oconto Falls occupied the top two spots at the lightning-shortened Oconto Falls Invitational on Thursday.
The Marines shot a 159, 10 strokes better than the second-place Panthers. The event was originally scheduled for 18 holes, but lightning brought it down to nine.
Seniors Kelten Harmanson and Keegan Polomis led Marinette with 38 and 39, respectively. Hermanson's 38 was the day's medalist round. Freshman Brady Eastman shot a 40.
"I hit some good shots, but I need to work on my short game," Polomis said. "The team shot an alright 159, but we know we left some strokes out there."
There were good signs for each golfer, with Hermanson saying he started hitting the ball better and finding the green. Eastman said he putted well.
Trey Kretz carded a 42 and Owen Hansen's 55 was dropped.
Oconto Falls shot a 169 as a team.
Marines Take Second in Showdown of State Powers
Marinette was handed a rare loss at the Kohler Triangular on Friday, as the Marines were beaten by the hosting Blue Bombers.
Kohler, the defending Division 3 state champions, shot a 340 as a team to beat Marinette's 359 and Sheboygan Falls' 365. Sheboygan Falls is ranked seventh in Division 1.
The Marines didn't get their usual scores in the high 70s and low 80s, with Trey Kretz shooting an 85 to lead the team. Kelten Hermanson shot an 88, Keegan Polomis carded a 92, and Brady Eastman got through 18 with 94 strokes. Owen Hansen's 111 was dropped.
Kretz Wins US Open Qualifier at Wild Rock
Marinette golfer Ty Kretz advanced in the United States Golf Association qualifier in Wisconsin Dells last week, moving on in his quest to play at the 122nd U.S. Open in Brookline, Massachusetts.
Kretz shot a three-under par 69 at Wild Rock Golf Course in the Dells to tie Bennett Cotten of Winnetka, Illinois atop the 82-golfer qualifier.
Kretz now advances to the sectional tournament on June 6. He will be joined by four other Wisconsin golfers and Hunter Eichorn of Carney, Michigan, who also advanced with a 70 at Wild Rock.
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