Escalon’s golf boys used a timely win against Hilmar, and a surprising loss by Hughson, to grab the lead in the chase for the Trans-Valley League varsity golf title. By defeating Hilmar 216-314 at Oakdale Golf and Country Club, coupled with a Husky loss against Ripon, the Cougar linksters moved into first with a record of 3-0 in TVL play and 8-0 overall.
In the match against the Yellowjackets, it was the play of Nolan Rockwell that led the way for the Purple and Gold. Rockwell managed to have his first 9-hole score in the 30s, and it was a good one. Carding a one-under par score of 35, he was the driving force in Escalon shooting its best dual match score of the year.
“Nolan was fantastic on Wednesday,” Coach Rusty Fachner commented. “Anytime you shoot below par at Oakdale, it’s a pretty impressive round. I knew Nolan was capable of a score like this, and it just took him some time to get his rhythm. I have to keep remembering that due to soccer, he had a later start than the rest of the guys.”
Following Rockwell was Matt Spurgeon, who used some stellar putting to check in at 42.
“The guys told me that Matt sunk two or three really long putts to save par,” Fachner noted. “It doesn’t surprise me. I’ve said all along that Matt may be the best pure putter on the team.”
Right behind Rockwell and Spurgeon, Danny Bava carded a 45, while Steven Gately and Nic Lattig added 47s. Nathan Sarkozy closed the team scoring with a 49, and Jimmy Wentzell chipped in with a 47 playing as an extra. Overall, it was impressive day for the Cougars.
“I’ve said it before, if we keep improving like we have over the past few tournaments and matches, we could be something really special at the end of this year,” Fachner concluded.
This week Escalon plays the Mid-Season Tournament at Castle Oaks, a practice match against Ripon Christian on Wednesday, March 28 and then returns to TVL play against Riverbank at Jack Tone Golf on Thursday, March 29.