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Parkston, Winner have sights on Class A title

Parkston and Winner look to make a step in winning a first-ever team state boys’ golf championship for their schools as they compete in the Class A state tournament today at Central Valley Golf Club in Hartford.

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“We have been going out playing, working on chipping and putting,” Winner head golf coach Randy Kludt said. “The weather has hurt us a little but we are all in the same boat. We are all waiting for nicer weather.”

Weather should not be a problem for the high school golfers today, as it is expected to be 68 degrees in Hartford.

With that in mind, Kludt is expecting a solid tournament from his team and a big-time performance from top-golfer Jayden Bruun. The senior golfer has won the last six events he has golfed in and will be counted on to lead the way for the Warriors.

“Jayden is a tough kid,” Kludt said. “He is smart, and he knows how to correct himself if he starts struggling. In a lot of tournaments, he doesn’t get off to a good start, but if he gets off to a good start (today), that makes it even better.”

Joining Bruun, who took 34th as a junior, for Winner are Lucas Jedlichi, Landon Engel, Sid Durrin and Sam Hossle. Kludt said he like his team’s chances, but said the favorite in the two-day tournament is Parkston. He added the Trojans have five solid golfers, who shoot in the 70s.

Leading the way for Parkston is senior Jake Weber, who looks poised for a second straight top-10 finish. Last year, Weber finished 10th at the Class A tournament, carding a 161.

This season, Weber has yet to win an individual event, but he has finished second in six of the last eight golf tournaments.

“Jake has had a great year,” Parkston head golf coach Tyler Hockett said. “His plan is to get a win when it counts. He kind of sets the tone for us, and we are looking for a great opening day and a great finish from him.”

Weber and Bruun tee off together at 9 a.m. today and Sioux Fall’s Christian’s Andy Huntington and West Central’s Dylan From will join them in the lead group.

If the Trojans are going to take their first boys’ state title home, they will also need major contributions from Ty Kinneberg, Garret Hohn, Jacob Lee and Jamie Smith. Hockett said his team is peaking at the right time and focused on approaching the state tournament like any other.

“The guys are playing really good all the way around, so it is exciting to go to the state tournament,” said Hockett, whose golfers tee off in the first five groups. “We had our best round of the year at regions when we shot a 295, so I think if we can keep our composure, we can do as good as anyone else.”

Adam Hutmacher is Chamberlain’s lone representative and tees off in the fifth group at 9:40 a.m.