Just one tournament into the season Manhattan Christian has already qualified five golfers for state. Four boys and girl accomplished that goal Thursday at Lake Hills Golf Course in Billings.
In actuality all eight of the team’s golfers shot state qualifying scores — 100 or less for the boys and 120 or less for the girls — but players must have a marker for the scores to count.
“All eight golfers shot qualifying scores today, so that was very encouraging and positive,” Eagles co-head coach Tom Hubers said. “It was encouraging to see the girls shoot the numbers that they did, especially on a tough conditions day like today.”
While it was a warm following several days of winter-like weather, the wind presented its share of challenges during a triangular that also included Columbus and Harlowton.
“It was very windy,” said Hubers. “It was windy and the greens were really pretty quick, so putting and chipping was tough. Hitting greens was tough.”
Cullen Visser led the boys with an 82 and was followed by Caidin Hill (83), Trevor VanDyken (90), Logan Leep (91) and Devan Walhof. All but Leep had a marker.
“Caidin struggled with his short game today. He shot 83,” said Hubers. “Cullen shot really solid through about 15 holes and then he had a few bad holes.”
Hill, a senior, is a two-time state champion, having won the Class C individual title as a freshman and again as a sophomore.
Tori Cook led the girls with a 98, while Grace Aamot and Natalie Walhof followed with a 106 and 111, respectively. Aamot had a marker.
“Grace has never played a varsity meet, neither has Tori,” said Hubers. “Natalie had an experience as a freshman two years ago, but Grace is only a sophomore and Tori’s a junior, but she didn’t get much opportunity two years ago.”
Christian returns to action April 8 at a tournament in Townsend.
“Overall, definitely happy with the scores that they shot, especially on the girls side,” said Hubers. “It was encouraging to see one girl break 100 and Grace shot 106. I think she told us she had 12 penalty strokes, so there’s some room for improvement there. But that’s encouraging too.”