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Golfers Play Their Way Back Into Title Battle

“Much better.”

That was the response of Escalon High School boys golf coach Rusty Fachner when asked about his team’s performance this past week. By going on the road and defeating both Mountain House and Modesto Christian, the young Cougar golf squad moved to 8-2 in Trans-Valley League play and 14-3 overall.

“After the tough loss at Ripon last week, we kind of righted the ship this week,” Fachner went on to say. “People say, you often learn a lot about yourself in a loss. I think we really looked at how we were playing and improved our play. I’m proud of the guys for taking such a great approach.”

In the win against Mountain House at Old River Golf Course, a 202-278 victory, the Cougar linksters posted some outstanding scores. Tim Wallace led the way with a one under par 35, while Zack Gardner came in at 37 and Nolan Rockwell at 38.

“Tim was outstanding. He has been playing really well over the past few weeks and it culminated in our team’s first sub-par round. Anytime you shoot under par, that’s an accomplishment,” Fachner commented.

After the solid top three scores, Danny Bava and Brad DaDalt both checked in at 46, while Nathan Sarkozy finished out the scoring with a 48.

“It was also nice to see great improvement from the three freshmen. I think they’ve learned a lot over the past week and put it into play. Once again, I’m very pleased,” Fachner added.

In beating Modesto Christian at Modesto Muni GC, 221-312, the Cougars used a steady effort by the top five players to post a convincing win. Once again it was Wallace leading the charge with a 41. Gardner and Rockwell tied for second with identical 43’s, while Bava came in at 46. DaDalt added a 48 and Brandon Levin finished out the scoring with a 52.

“Timmy was solid once again. I’m very happy for him. He’s worked hard,” noted Fachner. “I have also been impressed with the consistency of Danny Bava. He doesn’t hit it the furthest on the team, but he’s learned to keep himself out of trouble. That formula has allowed him to really lower his score over the past couple of rounds. I’m seeing great improvement from him.”

The Escalon golfers will play in the Bulldog Invitational before finishing out the season against Hughson and Hilmar. By winning both of those matches, the Cougars will give themselves an opportunity to win the league title by winning the league tournament on May 2 at Diablo Grande.

“If we close it out in the dual matches, like we should, we’ll give ourselves a shot at the title. You can’t ask for much more than that in a season that was labeled ‘a rebuilding year.’ Our young guys will be thrown right into the pressure of tournament play. Hopefully they’ll be up to the challenge. It should be fun,” Fachner concluded.