Cyclones to tee-off against Monarchs to open season
The HCHS boys golf team is looking to drive their season to success by teeing off on a good note starting April 4 against the Denison-Schleswig Monarchs.
“We go to Denison's home course for that first match,” said Cyclones Head Coach Chad Swanson. “It is a challenging course that our guys have played many times, so hopefully we will be able to avoid the trouble spots, keep the ball in play and navigate their always-fast greens.”
The Cyclones are eager to get the season going with many of them practicing out on the course preparing for the new season just weeks away.
“I know several of the guys have been out hitting the ball around a couple times already this year,” Swanson said. “It is always exciting heading into a new season. This is especially true this year as we return quite a bit of experience and have some young players with great potential.”
Last season, 10 players represented the golf team with many students returning for another go around with the team. Golf is a game that requires consistency and Swanson is hopeful that will be the case for the upperclassmen.
“I would really hope that our experienced golfers would just be a bit more consistent throughout a round of golf,” he said. “We also need to be sharper around the greens and save strokes with their short games.”
Seniors Jace Gubbels and Drew Bladt led the team in multiple categories last season. Gubbels averaged 42.86 strokes during a 9-hole course and 91.50 strokes during an 18-hole course, having the best average on the team. Bladt had the best 9-hole course score during the season with just 37 strokes.
Swanson is looking to Gubbels and Bladt to lead the way for the rest of the group, but there are two others Swanson is looking to, one of which shot his best at the Hawkeye 10 Conference Tournament.
“Jace Gubbels and Drew Bladt will definitely be expected to be two of our leaders as the season progresses,” he added. “They are very steady and both just really enjoy playing golf. But, we also return Alex Bladt and Braydon Ernst who have several years of varsity experience each and who I think could take solid steps forward.”
According to Swanson, weather was a huge factor that definitely played a role in last year’s competitions, but was still proud of the accomplishments his team had.
“The biggest team accomplishment was simply getting through the season,” he said. “I have never seen a worse season of wind and cold. I think we had two dates out of 13 competitions that one would say the weather was pleasant. We also played pretty solid golf at the Hawkeye 10 Conference tournament placing sixth as a team, but only five strokes out of third place. In that tournament, Alex Bladt shot his best round of the year with an 87 to earn a spot on the All-Conference Second Team.”