Steamboat high school golf team 3rd in Cortez tournament |

Steamboat high school golf team 3rd in Cortez tournament

— The members of the Steamboat Springs High School golf team took an educational journey this week, placing third in a tournament at the Conquistador Golf Club on Wednesday and then playing a practice round at Cobble Creek on Thursday.

"This was a chance to play the courses where the regional tournament and state tournament will be played later this year," coach Steve Dodson said. "This was an educational trip."

The Sailors played well, placing third in Wednesday's event on the same course where the regional tournament will be held Sept. 17 and 18. Steamboat finished with a team score of 230. Cortez won on the team’s home course finishing with a combined score of 221. Aspen, a 3A school, came in second at 228.

Steamboat was led by a strong effort by Brandon Martin, who overcame a slow start to finish with a score of 76. Teammates Erik Sobeck and Sam Samlowski finished with rounds of 77 on a course that Dodson described as "old school."

"The course has lots of small greens and tree-lined fairways," Dodson said. “The course was in good condition and rewards players for well-placed tee shots.”

Steamboat players Andrew Firestone, who shot an 81, and Casey Weston, who shot an 82, also played well, Dodson said.

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"I liked the course a lot," Martin said about Conquistador. "The key is keeping the ball in play and making sure your tee shots are where you want them."

Martin said he took a lot away from Wednesday's round and is hoping that will help when the team returns for the regional tournament in a few weeks.

"I think this round really helped," Martin said. "I definitely took a few things away from the round, and I'm hoping to cut a few strokes the next time around."

The experience of playing these courses is exactly what coach Steve Dodson was hoping his players would gain from making the long road trip. He thought all five players had strong performances and is hoping that the experience will improve the team in September and early October.

The Steamboat players also took advantage of the trip to get a few shots in at Cobble Creek in Montrose, where the state tournament will take place the first week of October.

The team will play a regular season tournament on that course next week.

Three of the five Steamboat players shot scores of 74 during a practice round Thursday and are confident after getting a feel for the course.

"Sure, I can improve," Samlowski said. "But I also feel like (Cobble Creek) is a course that I can handle."

To reach John F. Russell call, 970-871-4209 or email

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