Prep golf: Coal Ridge junior is floored by state berth
DURANGO — Riley Tamborello’s prep period for the Class 3A Western Slope Regional golf tournament might have been different, but it turned out pretty darn successful.
The Coal Ridge High School junior practiced putting on the hard carpet in his hotel room the day before Tuesday’s tournament. It wound up paying off, as Tamborello finished with a score of 9-over 80 for a fifth-place finish and his first berth in the Class 3A state tournament.
“The greens were really fast out there,” Tamborello said. “The night before coach [Jemiah Fowler] told me to practice putting on the hotel floor because it was just like putting on the greens. It turns out he was right.”
That proved true for Tamborello following a double-bogey on the par-3 12th hole, which he followed with five consecutive pars prior to a bogey on the par-4 18th.
With that, he finished seven strokes behind medalist Trey Robinson of Aspen (2-over 73). Cooper Gould of Vail Christian (74) was second, with Aspen’s Will Hazen (78) and Moffat County’s Mike Bingham (79) following.
Aspen won the team championship at Hillcrest Golf Course with a score of 239, with Vail Christian (247) and Vail Mountain (252) following. Coal Ridge finished sixth with a score of 270, with Grand Valley finishing ninth with a 285.
The 3A State Championships will take place at Northeastern Golf Course in Sterling from Sept. 29 to 30.
Tamborello almost had company from another Garfield County school. Grand Valley freshman Tyler Dove will be an alternate for the state tournament after he finished in a three-way tie for 19th place with Mason Daniels of Vail Christian and Jacob Robb of Cedaredge with an 18-hole score of 89.
Also finishing for Coal Ridge was Michael Moser (26th with a 92) and Daylen Tamborello (27th with a 98). JT Kellebrew of Grand Valley finished with a score of 91 to finish in a three-way tie for 23rd place.
“I have nothing to do but brag about these kids and what they’ve done,” Grand Valley coach Drew Thompson said. “We’ve played a million times better this year than we have in the past.”
The top 13 individuals from the tournament qualified for the state tournament.
The Class 4A Western Slope regional was also played at Hillcrest Golf Course. The only Garfield County school participating, Rifle, finished ninth in the nine-team field with a final score of 286. Durango won the team title with a 229, with Steamboat Springs (233) and Montezuma-Cortez (242) following.
Individually, Rifle’s Jacob Smith finished three strokes away from reaching the 4A state tournament, which will be held Sept. 29 and 30 at Walking Stick Golf Course in Pueblo. Smith finished in 10th place with an 11-over 82, which was three strokes behind a three-way tie for sixth place by Cory Gillespie of Durango, and Glen-Michael Mihavetz and Zane Sauer of Montrose. That turned out to be the state cutoff — the top eight individuals in the 4A regional earned state berths.
Winning the tournament was Durango’s Cy Spicer with a 1-over 72. Hayden Plewe of Montezuma-Cortez was second with a 74.
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It may be by a technicality, but the Valley Valkyries 7s rugby club were the de facto champions of their hosted tournament Saturday.