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Scottsbluff golf sends two to state
May 20, 2016 Jerry Purvis   

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Light to heavy rain didn’t seem to bother the McCook boys as the home team won the Class B6 District golf tournament on May 16.

McCook turned in a team score of 339, followed in second by Sidney with a 346 and Cozad in third at 363. Scottsbluff came in sixth with 392, and Gering was two strokes back in eighth with a team score of 394.

Scottsbluff’s top two golfers, Jonah Wright and Jared Pilkington, finished one-two for the Bearcats – Wright with a round of 82 for second place overall, and Pilkington three strokes back at 85 to take seventh. Craig Smith was next at 112, Sam McCaslin a stroke back at 113, and Vince Quijas at 125.

“It was a difficult golf course and the weather was crappy,” said Scottsbluff Coach Mike Klein. “The younger players don’t have a lot of experience and they struggled. The course was even rough on Jared and Jonah, but they made the best of it.”

Klein said that after the seniors were about five holes into the course, he thought he heard some thunder, but it could have been truck traffic from a nearby highway. Then a lightning bolt came out of nowhere, shutting down play for about 40 minutes. It was about 6:30 p.m. when Scottsbluff finished the course.

Both Wright and Pilkington qualified as individuals for the state tournament scheduled for May 24-25 at Pioneer Golf Course in Lincoln.

“It’s a rarity to have two qualify and not the whole team, but that’s the way it was for us this year,” Klein said. “A good goal would be for both of them to finish in the top five at state. I don’t think it’s that farfetched by any means.”

For Gering, Grant Maser led the field, posting a 90 for 16th place overall. Brandyn Larsen was six strokes back at 96. Grady Sherrell carded a 101 on the day, followed by Mason Marsh at 107, and Josh Wilson at 127.

Gering Coach Keaton Green said the day was windy and cold, and some of the holes were set up long. But everyone had to play in it and do the best they could. “We didn’t end up like we wanted,” Green said. “We missed out qualifying as a team or individually.
Grant was in second after nine holes but struggled on the back. He was disappointed, but he’s a junior and will be back next year. He could be one of the top golfers in the area.”

Green said the team is only losing one senior in Mason Marsh. He said if the players put in the time in the offseason, he expects to have a competitive team for next season.

Players will have that opportunity over the summer at the Panhandle Junior Tour with lots of events at a number of local courses around the Panhandle and into eastern Wyoming. Green said the team plans to take advantage of as many of those as possible.

There are also a couple of Nebraska Junior Tour events. Maser played in Junior Amateur Championship last year is planning on going again this year.

“Brandyn Larsen is a freshman and played varsity (the entire season),” Green said. “So did Josh Wilson and Grady Sherrell, both sophomores.

Overall we’re a fairly young team so it looks good for us going into next year.”

In action from last week, both Scottsbluff and Gering ended their regular seasons on May 12 at the Ogallala Invitational.
Scottsbluff finished in fifth place with a team score of 346.
Gering was in seventh at 349.

Scottsbluff’s Jared Pilkington was among the top 15 individual finishers, firing a 78 for fourth place. Teammate Jonah Wright finished sixth, carding an 80. None of the Gering golfers finished in the top 15.
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