Rifle golfers take third at Tiger Invitational story
Post Independent Staff
GRAND JUNCTION – The Rifle High School boys golf team has a resiliency that most prep teams lack.
For the past two years, the Bears have lost their former No. 1 player to graduation. That’s not a problem for Rifle – they simply slip in a replacement and continue on their successful ways.
At Monday’s Tiger Invitational, held at Bookcliff Country Club, Rifle’s top four golfers all finished among the Top 20 individuals in the 2003 season-opener, which hosted 17 prep golf teams from the Western Slope.
And at the end of the day, those scores earned the Bears third place in the team standings.
The Bears were led by Jeb Savage, whose 18-hole total of 77 earned the Rifle senior a tie for seventh place with three other golfers. As a team, the Bears shot a combined 235, four strokes back of second-place Montrose’s 231.
Host Grand Junction won the team championship on a combined round of 222.
Savage had the best round among area prep golfers at the Tiger Invite, but three of his teammates were nipping at his heels as the scorecards came in.
Cole Manuppella, last year’s individual tournament champion, finished with a 79 to tie him for 14th place with fellow Bear Jim Owens and three others.
Another Rifle golfer, Kip Giuseppe, was a shot back of Owens and Manuppella with an 80. Jason Brown, the Bears No. 5 golfer, finished the tournament with an 84.
Glenwood Springs, who finished in 12th place with a 253, was just happy to get to the golf course in time to play.
The Demons’ van, according to coach Norm Bolitho, was more than a hour late arriving due to a roll-over accident just east of Palisade.
“We had a bad start because we couldn’t warm up,” Bolitho said. “We were under the gun, and it went down from there.”
Jesse Hansen had the best round of the five-member Demon squad. The senior carded an 81, to finish just out of the top 20 individuals.
Sean Flohr finished with an 85, Jacob Ziemann shot 87, Connor Frey 93 and Matt McAdow 94.
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The Coal Ridge High boys suffered their first 3A Western Slope League loss of the year Thursday night on the road at Gunnison, falling to the defending league champion Cowboys 65-45.