Hawks and Kings already eyeing regionals
Catron and Garcia claim medalist honors
David Schultz said he feels confident about Gila Ridge's chances at winning the regional title, and none of his opponents disagreed Tuesday.
Even Yuma High coach Doug Thompson penciled the Hawks in for the match-play win before all the boys scores had been reported.
Thompson's early intuition proved correct as Gila Ridge went on to win the boys' match with a team score 162 to defeat Cibola (189), Kofa (194) and Yuma High (DQ). The win was the Hawks' third over the Raiders and Criminals and the second against the Kings.
"I’m pretty happy, we’ve been playing pretty well all year," Schultz said. "Overall, we’ve had a lot of kids slipping into the (No.) 3, 4 and 5 slots. Everyone’s been performing pretty well overall."
Collin Catron snagged medalist honors for the Hawks carding a 1-over 37 in the nine-hole outing. Catron, who had to sit out last season after transferring from Yuma High, has already been an impact player for Gila Ridge but not just for the scores he turns in.
"Collin Catron has taken on a certain leadership role for us," Schultz said. "He knows how to play golf, he knows how to practice. That’s something a lot of other kids don’t know how to do. We really aren’t always competing against other kids, we’re competing against ourselves."
Gila Ridge did well in both categories as Mason Lopez and Mitchell Nelson both carded 40 for the Hawks to tie for third place. Kofa's Daniel Linares took second with a 38 and Austin Magdeleno paced the Raiders with a 43 to finish fourth.
But Schultz said that his team's toughest challenge may come from the region's newest member.
"In the region, I think we’re probably the strongest team," Schultz said. "Havasu is our main competition right now, but we’ll need to show up everyday."
The Hawks lost the first meeting with the Knights 169-176. Catron was 8-over 44 during that match.
"It was tough, that course was very hard," Catron said. "It’s very windy there, it was the hottest day of the summer for me. Everyone had a little rough outing and we only lost by (seven)."
Kofa won the girls' match against Gila Ridge convincingly, 205-235, and Amanda Garcia medaled for the Kings with a 9-over 45.
"We’ve been playing a lot shorter courses recently," Kofa coach Eric Krepps said. "To have Amanda shoot 45, that’s her average last year here, so she’s picking up where she left off."
The Kings schedule is similar to Gila Ridge's boys team with one noticeable loss. "So far we’ve only lost one match to Lake Havasu by four strokes and nobody played really well there."