High school golf returns after year’s hiatus

Golf coaches Jim Hoffman of Seymour and Brent Hattabaugh of Brownstown Central said the Seymour Invitational played at Shadowood Golf Course on Saturday represented a starting point for their teams, and it was the first high school match for some of the Owls and Braves.

Columbus North, led by medalist Luke Schneider with a 38-33-71, easily won the tournament with a score of 312.

Seymour was second with 353, and Brownstown was sixth with 412. Seymour and two other schools entered A and B teams. There were 56 golfers.

There was no Indiana school golf last spring because of the coronavirus.

The start of the tournament was delayed because of frost on the greens and players couldn’t begin to tee off until 10:15 a.m., 75 minutes later than planned.

“It was a light frost, but when the sun came up, it dropped it down and it froze, and we had a little delay,” Hoffman said. “We played double par, and it turned out to be a beautiful day. The conditions were good. The greens were great. It has been two years since we played, and it was exciting to get going again.”

Owen Marshall was low for the Owls with 40-40-80. Next for Seymour was Ethan Dippold at 84.

Colton Girgis of North was second with a 79. Marshall was one of three players to shoot 80. The Owl senior was awarded the fourth-place plaque based on handicap holes.

“I had a bad start and a bad finish, but I played 14 holes good holes,” Marshall said. “I’ve got to take the good with the bad. I just got knocked down on the bad shots, and I need to bring them in a little bit. An 80 in the first match isn’t horrible at all. It’s something to build on, for sure. I did not hit driver very well at all today, and I had two three-putts from about 6 feet. Any time you do that, it’s not going to help your score.”

Hattabaugh felt the cold weather affected Brownstown’s play.

“The greens are fast here, and the rough is thick,” he said. “It’s the first match they’ve played all year, and for four of the five, it’s the first time they’ve played varsity, so we can only improve from here.”

Jaren Cunningham was low for the Braves with 51-49-100, and Chandler Stahl was next at 103.

Cunningham is a sophomore, and this was his first high school match.

“I think for the first match of the year, after not playing for almost two years because of COVID, I’m decently proud of myself. My drives were pretty good today,” he said.

“My putting was a little shaky because coming from Hickory Hills to Shadowood, that’s a big transition, especially on the speed of the greens. Shadowood’s greens are so much faster. I definitely need to work on my short game. The short game is always something that everybody can improve on.”

The Owls host Southwestern on Tuesday, and the Braves travel to Columbus North on Tuesday.

Hoffman said he hoped the Owls’ score would have been under 330.

“We’re probably 20 strokes difference,” he said. “We know where it’s at. We had some nerves. We had some kids that are young, first varsity match and we’ll get better. We know what we need to work on, and I’m excited about what we can do. The future is bright, and I think we’re going to have a great year.”

Seymour Invitational

At Shadowood

Teams- Columbus North 312, Columbus North B 350, Seymour A 353, Bedford North Lawrence 357, Bloomington North 367, Columbus East 386, Bedford North Lawrence B 398, Jennings County 409, Brownstown Central 412, Seymour B 449

Seymour- Owen Marshall 40-40-80, Ethan Dippold 43-41-84, Noah Surface 43-48-91, Manny Fontanez 48-50-98, Zach Storey 49-57-106, Andon Self 50-56-106, Andrew Knieriem 53-55-108, Harrison Fleetwood 53-62-115, Drew Schroeder 56-59-115, Trevor Alberring 60-62-122, Grant Smith 62-68-130

Brownstown- Jaren Cunningham 51-49-100, Chandler Stahl 50-53-103, Caden Clodfelder 52-52-104, Elix Preston 50-55-105, Cooper Wolka 58-53-111, Carson Darlage 59-52-111

Medalist- Luke Schneider (CN) 38-33-71