Middle Park golfers turn in solid performances | SkyHiNews.com

Middle Park golfers turn in solid performances

Will Bublitz
Sky-Hi Daily News

Middle Park High’s golf team has already swung into its 2008 season, earning some early successes in its first couple of competitions.

The golfers on this year’s Panther team include Cooper Knockenmus, Dan Walker, Jared Rojo, Kaylee Findley, Marshall Simone, Sam Kerber, Parker Hale, AJ Sapien, Hans Berggren, Matt Naschak, Nick Isaacs, Nick Stenicka and Jake Charland.

Middle Park’s team is being led by coach Kate Walker and assistant coach John Aagesin.

“We’re really excited about the start of our season,” said Walker, who previously coached golf teams at Summit and Mullen high schools. “We expect to see further improvement and success as the season continues.”

The Panther golfers competed in their first tournament last Friday, Aug. 8 at the Pole Creek Golf Course. They hosted three teams from the Denver Metro area.

In Friday’s season-opener, Midldle Park placed third with a score of 291. The tournament was won by Denver East with 238, followed by George Washington High taking second place with 277. Fourth place went to Thomas Jefferson High with 314.

The tournament’s individual results were led by Denver East’s David Steengrer, who posted a score of 77. Middle Park’s top golfer was Kaylee Findley, who was in a three-way tie for sixth place with a score of 91.

The results for the rest of Panther golfers at the Pole Creek tournament were: Jared Rojo, 99; Cooper Knockenmus, 110; Marshall Simone, 113; Dan Walker, 114; and AJ Sapien, 127.

“Considering that we only had tryouts on Monday, I thought we had good results for our first tournament,” coach Walker said. “But there is definitely room for improvement. It was good for our kids to see Front Range players who can shoot in the 70s. They realize now that to be competitive, they’ll have to step their play up a notch.”

On Tuesday, Aug. 12, Middle Park’s golfers traveled to Foothills Golf Course in Lakewood for a dual tournament with Colorado Academy.

“Some of Colorado Academy’s top players were not there, but we posted some good scores,” Walker said. “It also helped to be playing on a Front Range course, which tends to be less challenging than mountain courses. But that does not to take away from the fact that we earned our first score in the 80s.”

Jared Rojo earned that honor with a score of 89. He also took first place individually in Tuesday’s dual tournament.

The rest of the Panthers also turned in good scores, including: Kaylee Findley, 91; Matt Naschak, 92; Dan Walker, 97; Marshall Simone, 101; and Hans Berggren, 104.

Middle Park emerged the winner from Tuesday’s competition with a score of 369 to Colorado Academy’s 375.

“With every tournament we play, our players are gaining valuable experience,” Walker said. “Some of them have not had a chance to play much this summer, but with practices and competitions five or six days a week, they’ll be perfecting their skills.”

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