Tigers win home golf tourney to start seasonAug 13, 2017 By Scott Akanewich, Sports Editor
Lander's boys and girls both claimed team victories at the season's opening event on their home course.
Saying the Lander Valley High School golf squad burst from the gates with a purpose to begin the new season is a slight understatement.
The Tigers boys and girls teams both claimed their respective competitions at the Terry Berg Invitational at Lander Golf Course on Thursday and Friday.
Leading the way for the Lady Tigers was two-time defending Class 3-A state girls champion Macy Jacobson, who set the scenic, par-71 layout overlooking the valley below on fire, with the Wind River Mountains providing a spectacular backdrop.
Which was appropriate, because Jacobson was absolutely spectacular herself, firing rounds of 76 and 77 for a two-day total of 153, good enough for an incredible 26-shot victory over runner-up and teammate Rachel Stoinski, who posted an 87-92-179.
According to Lander head coach Mike Watson, Jacobsen had continued to improve even more since only last season.
"Macy's getting even more mature now as far as her game is concerned," said Watson. "Also, Rachel shot her best-ever tournament round."
Lander's Jaclyn Hudson finished fourth with a score of 98-103-201, helping the Lady Tigers secure the team title in the process, with an overall score of 261-272-533, which was 96 shots better than second-place Star Valley, who claimed seventh, 10th and 15th places in the individual competition and finished at 319-310-629.
Hudson provides a presence as the Lady Tigers' No. 3 player, said Watson.
"We already knew what we had with Macy and Rachel," he said. "But, having Jaclyn is huge because she's certainly not going to hurt us on the course."
Jade Ware posted a 127-115-242 and Laina Martin shot 145-134-279 to round out the Lady Tigers' contingent.
On the boys' side of the event, Lander freshman Jaren Caulkins fired a 70-71-141 to win, with Tigers teammate Dominic Yates finishing second, four shots back at 73-72-145.
Wilson Brockie was fourth for Lander at 80-72-152, with Jacob Lytle eighth, putting up an effort of 92-84-176.
Luke Nielsen also shot 90-91-181 for Lander.
In all, the Tigers finished with a team score of 313-299-612, 86 shots better than Star Valley's 358-340-698.
Watson was pleased with the overall play of both the boys and girls as they dominated on either side of the tournament, he said.
"Each week we set a goal," said Watson. "But, each week is a different week because golf is such a mental game."
As far as overconfidence setting in as a result of the margin of victory, Watson's not worried about it, he said.
"I want to make sure we just don't show up and expect to win," said Watson. "We have to constantly find ways to challenge ourselves."
In their first tournament of the post-Easton Paxton era, the Wolverine boys finished fourth in the six-team field, as new No. 1 Jorden James carded a 79-70-149, good enough for a third-place finish in the tournament.
Other Wolverines included Kellen Miller (96-94-190), Konnor Gaston (100-103-203), Braxton Fehring (86-109-195) and Coby Cunningham (110-111-221).
Shelby Watson was the low Lady Wolverine with a fourth-place finish, after firing a 95-96-191, while Katie Davis was eighth with a 108-106-214.
Next up for both the Wolverines and Tigers is the Riverton Invitational this Thursday and Friday at the Riverton Country Club.