Kernels hoping for strong scores at ESD meetThe Mitchell High School golf team will enter Saturday’s Eastern South Dakota Conference meet at Broadland Creek Golf Course in Huron with a bit of momentum.
By: Matt Bunke, The Daily Republic
The Mitchell High School golf team will enter Saturday’s Eastern South Dakota Conference meet at Broadland Creek Golf Course in Huron with a bit of momentum.
The Kernels have posted season-best scores at two meets in a row, highlighted by a 324 at last week’s Mitchell Invite. Mitchell coach Sean Moen said his team doesn’t have any delusions of competing for a conference title, but knows it has made progress in recent weeks. Moen said he hopes his team can take a few more strokes off their previous best score and beat a number of ESD teams in the process.
The key to improving on the score from the Mitchell Invite will be once again having strong scores across the board. At that tournament, Phoenix Sigmund came on strong with an 81, Jed Griffith had an 83 and Austen Iverson fired an 87, marking the first time this year that the Kernels had four golfers in the 80s or better.
“If we drop to a 315 I would be very pleased,” Moen said. “It would be nice to be even better than our last outing.”
While Mitchell won’t be able to contend with the likes of Pierre and Yankton for a conference title, J.P. Schmitz, the Kernels’ No. 1 golfer, should be a strong contender for the individual title. Schmitz is coming off a title at the Mitchell Invite, where he finished with a 73 and beat Yankton’s Chris Hoffman on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff.
“I have high hopes for J.P. Schmitz to turn in a good score and try to capture that conference championship,” Moen said. “I would say he’s one of the top five players in the ESD at this point.”
At Broadland Creek, Schmitz and the rest of the Kernels will have to compete with a tough course. Moen said the greens are reported to be increasingly fast this year, and his team is scheduled to play a practice round there this afternoon in order to prepare for Saturday’s tournament.
“The best thing for that is to always stay below the hole,” Moen said. “We’ll get an idea where those pins are placed (this) afternoon. We really want to find out not only the places where you want to be, but especially the places where you absolutely do not want to be. That can cause big numbers if you’re in the wrong place on those greens.”
Saturday’s meet begins at 10 a.m., and much as it has been all year, Moen said the way his team manages the course will dictate how much success the team has.
“We’re trying to avoid the ugly holes,” Moen said. “We’re trying to avoid the triple bogeys, especially on Par 3s. On any course — Lakeview or Huron — Par 3s is where you can accumulate a tremendous amount of strokes if you don’t play it well. Our short game is seemingly getting better as we go on. A majority of our strokes on our short game, so that’s what is bringing our total down.”