Rifle shows depth at invitational | PostIndependent.com

Rifle shows depth at invitational

Post Independent/Kelley Cox

RIFLE – Steven Anderson’s team-low score of 78 raised some eyebrows when it was posted during Wednesday’s Rifle Invitational.Few golfers slotted in the No. 5 position, as the Rifle High sophomore was prior to the 16-team prep boys tournament, are expected to lead a team. But first-year Bears coach Duke Earl knows differently.”We have a good team. Any day our Number 5 and 6 guys can be our Number 1 and 2 guys,” he said.Anderson’s round placed him among the top 15 individuals and helped Rifle earn a third-place tie in the team standings with Rangely.

Basalt, on rounds of 77 by Connor Rakowski, 79 from Jim Knous and Nick Johnson’s 83, took the runner-up spot with a overall score of 239, three strokes back. Matt Hubbell aided Rifle’s charge by finishing two strokes back of his teammate at 80. Mike Sours and Brandon Forney rounded out the Bears’ team score with identical rounds of 83. Shawn Cruse, the Bears’ No. 3 golfer, scored an 86.Rifle didn’t win the team or individual titles. Those honors went to Class 5A school Fruita Monument and Rangely’s Kris Huitt, respectively. Huitt won by scoring an even-par 72.Wednesday’s effort put Earl in a good mood about the Bears’ future.

“We need to be a little more consistent, because (the team) is young,” said Earl. “But the way they played today, we should be solid and tough at the end of the year.”Consistency was also a topic of discussion for Glenwood Springs coach Bryan Whiting as he discussed the Demons’ performance at Rifle Creek.He said the course’s back nine holes caused the team problems, adding strokes to each player’s score.After the Demons posted three rounds in the 70s at Tuesday’s Central Invitational in Grand Junction, Cody Nelson carded Glenwood’s best score Wednesday – an 80. Michael Flohr followed at 82; Tory Garling managed an 89. Kevin Warkentine and Matt McAdow came in at 91 and 93, respectively.

The back nine also cost Roaring Fork’s Adam Joiner a chance at winning his second individual medal this season. The Rams senior had the course in his hands, carding a 31 after the first nine holes. Holes 10-18 weren’t as friendly, as Joiner shot a 43.Still, his overall round of 74 was good enough to force a playoff for second place with Delta’s Ryan Smith and Marty Marquez of Grand Junction Central.Smith broke the tie at the fourth playoff hole to earn second, with Marquez taking third over Joiner.Grand Valley, which finished in a ninth-place tie with Montezuma-Cortez, was paced by Colton Cowen’s team-best round of 80.After taking the weekend off, most of the area teams are scheduled for tournament play at “The Hill” in west Glenwood next Monday. After taking the weekend off, most of the area teams are scheduled for tournament play at “The Hill” in west Glenwood next Monday.

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