THS golfers 5th at Jaguar Invitational
Led by junior Colby Yates, Tonganoxie High’s golf team had two players shoot in the 70s Wednesday at Mill Valley’s Jaguar Invitational, but the Chieftains finished fifth in the team standings.
Yates (71), who finished second in the individual standings, and THS freshman Drew Sandburg (79), both scored well, coach Jared Jackson said, but the squad’s other three golfers didn’t have their best days and the Chieftains finished 25 strokes behind tournament champion Blue Valley Southwest at Prairie Highlands Golf Course, in Olathe.
“Our back end did not hold up their end of the bargain,” the coach said, noting Tonganoxie needs better play out of its No. 3, 4 and 5 spots.
Jackson said Yates and Sandburg played at a high level, which he expected, and credited the “hard work” they put in while practicing.
Jaguar Invitational scores for the team’s other three golfers — Aaron Williams, Tanner Hale and Kody Campbell — ranged between 89 and 92. Jackson said the golfers were struggling with consistency from hole to hole and noted both Williams and Campbell have made some recent swing adjustments, which he expects will help improve their scores in the long run.
“It is still early in the season,” Jackson said after the team’s second event, “and if we put in the needed practice we will make progress.”
Another area where Jackson thinks the team will improve is around the green.
“We are still giving away too many strokes in our short game,” the coach said. “The short game should improve as the season progresses.”
Jackson just wished the team could have played better on Wednesday, which he said was a great day for low scores.
“We played from a shorter distance than normal and the weather was perfect,” he said. “It was the type of day for a golfer to set a personal low. We didn't completely take advantage of that opportunity.”
Yates finished three strokes behind tournament winner Travis Mays, Blue Valley Southwest, who shot 68.
After winning its season-opening tournament on March 26, Tonganoxie had a 10-day layoff before playing in the Jaguar Invitational. Jackson said he liked having that time off, because it allowed the golfers to work on their weaknesses. The Chieftains’ schedule is about to become far more regular, though, with one tournament a week until the end of the season.
Next up for THS, at 3 p.m. Monday, is the Lansing Invitational at Leavenworth Country Club.
Mill Valley Jaguar Invitational
April 6 at Prairie Highlands Golf Course, Olathe
Team scores: 1. Blue Valley Southwest, 305; 2. Olathe East, 312; 3. Piper, 315; 4. St. Thomas Aquinas, 322; 5. Tonganoxie, 330; tie-6. De Soto, 334; tie-6. Bonner Springs, 334; 8. St. James Academy, 344; 9. Mill Valley, 364; 10. Bishop Ward, 365; 11. Turner, 369; 12. Basehor-Linwood, 390; 13. Perry-Lecompton, 408; 14. Lansing, 425.
THS individual scores: 2. Colby Yates, 71; Drew Sandburg, 79; Aaron Williams, 89; Tanner Hale, 91; Kody Campbell, 92.