Cougar golfers kept their Trans-Valley League championship hopes alive last week as the varsity boys defeated both Modesto Christian and Mountain House. With the wins, the Cougar linksters moved to 8-1 in league play, and 13-2 overall. Additionally, with the two victories, Escalon has all but assured itself a place in the Division IV playoffs.
“It was a good week in that we played well,” Coach Rusty Fachner commented. “We played with some new players, and it was good to see them do well.”
In defeating Modesto Christian, the Cougars used the strong play of Zack Gardner, as he came in with a 38 on the tough Oakdale course.
“Zack continues to do everything you can ask of a number one player,” noted Fachner. “He leads by being a team captain and by showing others the way golf needs to be played. He’s been terrific for us all year.”
Following Gardner was Nathan Sarkozy, who shot a 43 and also drew praise from Fachner.
“Nate has been really good this year. His improvement has been off the charts. He has worked very hard on his game, and it really shows. If he keeps getting better at this rate, he’ll be one of the best players in the league next season … if he isn’t already.”
Danny Bava and Brandon Levin led the next level of scoring as they posted identical 50s. Jimmy Wentzell added a 55 and Nick Lattig finished the scoring on the day with a 56.
Against Mountain House, the Cougars dominated the scoring, as the match was changed to the par 32, Escalon Golf Course due to a rescheduling conflict. In shooting a 183 as a team, Escalon posted solid scores up and down the line-up. Gardner again led the way with an even-par 32, and Sarkozy was once again right behind him with a 34. Bava followed with a 37, Levin added a 39 and, Lattig and Wenztell came in at 41.
The Cougars face a difficult task this week as they opened on Monday (April 24) with the Bulldog Invitational at Tracy Country Club, followed by a three-way match against Hughson and Hilmar at Oakdale. On Wednesday, the Purple and Gold will host Ripon in a match that will go a long way to deciding the eventual TVL champ.
“It will be tough and interesting. We will be using some new players, and we’ll see how they come through for us. Hopefully our depth as a team will help us. If we want the title, everyone will have to step up,” Fachner concluded.