Photo by John F. Russell
Steamboat Springs' Michael Weston hits his tee shot down the fairway at Haymaker during Monday morning's Colorado Junior Golf Association's Haywhacker golf tournament.
Steamboat golfers playing in this year's Haywhacker included Scott Ptach, who shot 80; Michael Weston, who shot 81; and Jace Hvambsal, who shot a 104 in the 16-18 division.
Alan Capistron shot an 80, and Patrick Weston finished at 92 in the 14-15 division. Jack Lupori finished with a 49 in nine holes in the 11-13 group.
Steamboat Springs On most days, Reid Howey and Austin Wertz are teammates on the Arapahoe High School golf team.
But today will be a different.
Both players shot rounds of 75 on the opening day of the Colorado Junior Golf Association's Haywhacker golf tournament and are part of a three-way tie for first place along with Englewood's William Scherman in the 16- to 18-year-old age group.
All three golfers will be grouped together today as they go head to head in the final round at the Haymaker Golf Course in Steamboat Springs.
"It's not going to change anything," Wertz said. "It's going to be pretty relaxed. It should be fun to play with Reid, and I don't expect things to get too competitive out there."
Howey said he wasn't surprised that his round of 75 was leading his flight after the opening round, or that he's sharing the spotlight with his teammate.
"We've played a lot of golf together," Howey said. "So I knew he would be right there with me."
Both Wertz and Howey said it's going to take a smart round on the final day to bring home a title, and with just three strokes separating the top five players, every shot is going to be important. Seven players in the 16-18 age division scored 80 or better on the opening day and are just waiting for the leaders to slip.
"I had a decent round (Monday), but it could have been better," Howey said. "I will need to play smart (today) and keep the ball in play."
Howey's best finish in a CJGA event came earlier this month at King's Deer Golf Club in Monument where he placed second. However, he said conditions were much different.
"It was 40 degrees, and the wind was blowing about 30 mph," Howey said. "Conditions were perfect in Steamboat today."
This year's CJGA event in Steamboat Springs drew more than 235 golfers playing in boys 11-13, boys 14-15, boys 16-18 and boys championship flights. The girls fielded flights in the 11-13 and 14-18 age groups.
The boys championship flight finished late Monday afternoon with Englewood's Taylor Bolton-Harvey leading the pack at 69 - the lowest score of the day. Brendan Connolly of Castle Rock, Parker Edens of Greeley and Steven Moore of Greenwood Village all are within reach at 73.
Connor Klein of Lone Tree set the pace in the boys 14-15 division with an impressive round of 72. Aurora's Joshua Kim is in second at 76, and Lone Tree's Pierson Palmer is in third at 77. Highland Ranch's Blake Basham and Broomfield's Zackarey Thoutt are tied at 78, and Highland Ranch's Kyle Tobin and Englewood's Nick Willenbrock are tied at 79.
Jimmy Makloski of Pueblo, Payton DeVencenty of Aurora and Longmont's Dylan Wonnacott share the lead for the boys 11-13 division with nine-hole rounds of 36.
Aurora's Seungha Choi took a commanding lead in the girls 14-18 division with an opening-round 76. Shinwoo Lee, also of Aurora, and Bryce Emily Schroeder of Pueblo shot rounds of 79.
Danielle Urman shot a round of 40 to lead the girls 11-13 division. Jennifer Kupcho, Andra Ballou and Kaycee Villanueba are just five strokes off the pace at 45.