Gothenburg golfers enter rebuilding season
It may feel a little like baptism by fire for the Gothenburg boys golf team this spring.
Only one letter winner returns from last year’s team and one other golfer has varsity experience from two seasons ago.
“We’re almost starting from scratch,” said Swede coach Don Graham. “Except for a couple of guys, I’m not sure anyone has played an 18-hole round in competition. We know we’ve got a lot of work to do and we’ll kind of have to learn as we go.”
Junior Trenton Long is the only returning letter winner. Fellow junior Nathan Graham lettered as a freshman but didn’t golf last spring.
The two seniors competing bring only limited experience to the course so that means there will be a host of new kids forced to step up, Graham said.
“I’m expecting a lot out of the juniors,” he said. “Besides Trent and Nathan, we’re going to have to see big things from Drake Brand, Adam Speck and Brett Mann.”
Weather so far has hindered practices a bit, leaving the Swedes uncertain about the first competition.
“I don’t know that we’re really ready,” Graham said of the North Platte Invite set to tee off at Iron Eagle Golf Course at 9 a.m. Friday. “I’d like to have another week of practice.”
Graham expects Broken Bow to be the area front-runner, as well as the team to beat in the Southwest Conference and B-4 district.
“They’ve got everyone back and they’ve put themselves in a position to challenge for a state title,” the coach said. “We know we’ve got to make big strides this year. That’s the fun part about a new season.”
Members of the 2013 Swede boys golf team are (*denotes letter winner):
SENIORS—Cody Cooper, Jake Matthies.
JUNIORS—Drake Brand, Nathan Graham, Eric Linnemeyer, Trenton Long*, Brett Mann, Adam Speck.
SOPHOMORES—Tyler Baker, Archer Jensen.
FRESHMEN—Riley Ostendorf, Patrick Messersmith, Skyler Schwanz, Josh Reinhard, Gage Taylor, Stuart Moore, Hayden Hubbard.