The greens, fairways and tee boxes at Haymaker Golf Course will be full today as more than 100 of the state's top prep golfers converge here for the Steamboat Invitational.
"It's not a problem to get people to come play our golf course," Sailors coach Steve Dodson said. "People like to come to our neck of the woods."
This year, 110 golfers from 17 schools will tee off in the annual tournament that starts with a 9 a.m. shotgun start. Last year, the tournament drew 13 schools.
Dodson said the tournament is even better because, on Thursday, golfers will travel just down the road to Craig and play in the Moffat County Invitational. Craig is scheduled to host the regional tournament this season.
Schools competing this year include Roaring Fork, Delta, Fruita-Monument, Grand Jun--ct--ion Central, Grand Junction, Cor--tez, Montrose, Glenwood Springs, Basalt, Rifle, Moffat County, Gunnison, Battle Moun--tain, Pali--sade, Eagle Valley, Vail Mountain and Telluride.
Last year, Montrose won the tournament, and Dodson said his players are eager to keep the trophy here in 2005.
"We shouldn't need any extra fuel to get up for this one," Dodson said.
Dodson thinks his players should have an advantage playing on their home course, and he hopes they will be in the running for the title at the end of the day.
Another big advantage to playing at home is that Dodson will be able to play 17 Sailors golfers today, and he plans to send 10 of them to Craig for Thursday's event.
The Sailors usually enter five varsity golfers in a tournament. This week, Dodson will be able to play his entire varsity team along with many of the squad's younger junior varsity players.
Dodson expects the competition to be strong, with serious threats coming from Montrose and Fruita-Monument.