Steamboat golfers looking for a win

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Sailors Golf Shootout coming up

The deadline to register for the Sailors Golf Shootout benefit golf tournament at Catamount Ranch and Club is Thursday. The Sept. 8 tournament benefits all area youth golf programs, with an emphasis on the Steamboat Springs High School golf team. The tournament begins at noon with a shotgun start. The format is four-person modified best ball. The cost is $150 per person and includes prizes. There also will be silent and live auctions. To sign up, call Steve Dodson at 846-4223 or Butch Boucher at 291-9053.

— With the possibility of only one team from the Western Slope region making the state golf tournament, the Steamboat Springs High School golf team today has a chance to make a real statement.

Playing in a 9 a.m. shotgun start at Haymaker Golf Course against a field that is expected to be almost as deep as the regional tournament Sept. 22 and 23, Steamboat should have every opportunity to put itself in position to be one of the top teams and be in contention for its third tournament win of the year.

"Being in the mid-220s as a team is a pretty good target," Steamboat coach Steve Dodson said. "Montrose is deep and Eagle Valley and Battle Mountain have good teams. A lot of these teams are using this tournament as a stepping stone to regionals and state, as well."

Montrose enters today as perhaps Steamboat's biggest challenger. The two programs have battled back and forth throughout the season, with Montrose edging Steamboat by six shots at Cobble Creek in Montrose last week.

But the Sailors should have the clear advantage today.

Each of Steamboat's players have played numerous rounds at Haymaker, and the team consensus Tuesday was anything less than a win would be a letdown.

"I think we definitely expect to win," Steamboat senior Jace Hvambsal said. "This is our home course. We just want to go out there and shoot low. We don't want to let anyone beat us on our home course."

Dodson said playing at Haymaker can put more pressure on his team, causing the Sailors to play not to lose.

"I don't want them to take it lightly, and I don't think they will," Dodson said. "They're a pretty competitive group. We'll go out and try to protect our home field and do the best we can."

In addition to Hvambsal, Alan Capistron, Ben VonThaden, Kaelen Gunderson and Scott Ptach are expected to compete for the varsity squad today. Because the tournament is in Steamboat, all the Sailors will get some tournament experience.

"I wouldn't say there is any added pressure," VonThaden said. "It's just like the others except we have an advantage of knowing where to play the ball."

Dodson encouraged the community to come out and support the Sailors. He said the tournament should wrap up by about 3 p.m.

"I hope that we see some local support," Dodson said. "Come out and watch these kids compete. They're a good bunch, and I know they feed off that type of energy with spectators."

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