Huge tourney for golf team set for Tuesday |
Luke Graham

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Huge tourney for golf team set for Tuesday

Regional event at Haymaker is Sailors' one chance to qualify for state

Steamboat Springs High School golfer Skyler Martin watches Alan Capistron tee off Saturday during a practice round at Haymaker Golf Course.

Steamboat’s golfers

Kaelen Gunderson

Year: senior

Scoring averages this season: 74.5

Key to his game: Consistency and making no worse than bogie.

Scott Ptach

Year: senior

Scoring averages this season: 77.3 Key to his game: Finishing the last three holes strong.

Alan Capistron

Year: junior

Scoring averages this season: 78.3

Key to his game: Putting.

Skyler Martin

Year: junior

Scoring averages this season: 83.6

Key to his game: Starting the first couple of holes strong.

If you go

What: Class 3A and 4A regional golf tournament

Where: Haymaker Golf Course

When: Groups tee off at 9 a.m. Tuesday. Class 3A goes off No. 10, and Class 4A goes off No. 1

— Despite positioning themselves as one of the top teams in the region and having several players win tournaments, only Tuesday really matters for the Steamboat Springs High School golf team.

Starting at 9 a.m. at Haymaker Golf Course, the Sailors host the Class 3A and 4A regional golf tournament.

It’s the one and only chance for players and teams to qualify for the state meet, on Oct. 5 and 6 at Highlands Ranch Golf Club in Denver.

Class 3A players will tee off on No. 10, and Class 4A players tee off on No. 1, to start the day.

The winning team qualifies for the state tournament, and the next seven to 11 individuals not on that team qualify for state.

The Colorado High School Activities Association informs coaches Tuesday how many individuals their regions get to take.

Steamboat is expected to battle for the team title with Cortez, Montrose and Battle Mountain.

“Every day at practice we prepare ourselves to win, but we measure ourselves by how well we execute our shots and how well we manage the round of 18 holes,” Steamboat coach Steve Dodson said. “Do that well, and usually good things will happen.”

In addition to the team wins, Steamboat brings into the tournament one of the most talented and experienced groups.

Seniors Kaelen Gunderson and Scott Ptach each made state last year and enter this year’s event as two perennial low medalists.

Add in juniors Alan Capistron and Skyler Martin, and the Sailors are feeling confident.

“We’re pretty strong mentally,” Ptach said. “We won our past three tournaments even though we haven’t played that solid. It’s a confidence boost. It’s our home course again, and if we can relax and take it easy, it will all come together.”

Although Steamboat is on its home course and has the resulting comfort level, playing at home can bring expectations and unwanted nerves.

“It’s all mental,” assistant coach Tom Taylor said. “These guys all have the skilxls. It’s getting in the right frame of mind.”

Dodson and all the players said the goal is to win the tournament and go to state as a team.

A good reflection of that might be the Sept. 9 tournament at Haymaker. There, Steamboat finished in a tie for first with Battle Mountain.

“We realize it’s about team golf. Every shot just isn’t for you,” Capistron said. “We all know we’re playing for the other three guys on the team, too.”