Weaving in and out of raindrops, the Escalon High School golf boys continue to roll along, staying undefeated in dual matches this season.
After beating both Ripon Christian and Riverbank, the Cougar linksters saw their record move to 9-0 overall, and 4-0 in Trans-Valley League play. Adding to that two solid finishes in tournament play, and it was two very good weeks for Escalon High golf.
On Monday, March 26, the Purple and Gold traveled to Castle Oaks Golf course to play in the TVL Mid-Season Tournament. The Cougars turned in a solid team effort with some stellar individual play. Nathan Sarkozy finished second with a score of 84, and he was followed by third-place finisher, Nolan Rockwell’s 85. Danny Bava took fifth place with an 88, and Steven Gately checked in at 90. Nic Lattig’s 93 was good enough for 10th and James Wentzell’s 113 finished out the scoring.
“Once again it was our depth that was the key,” Coach Rusty Fachner commented. “We didn’t have the number one player, but we had five guys in the top ten. We have been working this way all year. It’s good team golf. They were really solid efforts by Nathan, Nolan, and Danny.”
On Wednesday following the tournament, Escalon took on a very solid Ripon Christian team. Favored to be the champion in Division 6, the Cougars defeated the Knights in convincing fashion, 221-259. Balanced scoring once again led to the victory, as Gately and Sarkozy both shot 41 to take scoring honors. Nolan Rockwell was right behind the leaders with a 42, while Matt Spurgeon logged a 48. Bava’s 49 and Lattig’s 50 completed the day. Fachner was impressed with the effort of Gately.
“Nathan, Nolan, and Danny have led us most of the year. It was good to see Steven step up and give us a solid round,” the coach pointed out. “We’ll need that as the league and section tournaments approach.”
The Cougars once again took to the road to play Riverbank at Jack Tone Golf Course. The Cougars overwhelmed the Bruins 189-285 in the TVL tilt. Sarkozy once again led the way with a 34, and Bava added a 35. Rockwell checked in at 37, while Gately carded a 39. Lattig added a 44 and Blake Kissee, playing in his first varsity match, shot a 47.
“It was a solid effort by the guys,” Fachner noted. “It wasn’t fancy or special, just a good solid win. I was particularly happy that Blake got a chance to compete. He has been such an important piece of our team over the past four years that it was fun to see him get an opportunity to play.”
Finally, the Cougars played in the Dublin Challenge held at Dublin Ranch Golf Course. The Challenge consisted of four teams, Escalon Ripon, Hilmar, and Orestimba, with the Cougars taking first place. A cool, windy par-63 course, it was a tough day for scoring, but Rockwell didn’t seem to mind. He took first place honors, shooting a 66, and running away from the field.
“It was a difficult day, to say the least,” said Fachner. “For Nolan to only be three-over, was a pretty spectacular feat. He really played well.”
In addition to Rockwell, Bava shot 76 to take third place, and Sarkozy’s 79 placed him fifth. Lattig managed an 86, while Gately added an 89, and Kissee’s 113 closed out the scoring.
Fachner was quick to note that the toughest part of the team’s schedule was approaching, and that they would have to continue to play well.
“After the break, we have Ripon, Hughson, and Hilmar, followed right away with another match with Hughson. We have to be at the top of our game if we want to win the championship. Continuing to play good team golf, will be the key. So far, we’ve done an excellent job of picking each other up. I hope we can keep it going,” Fachner concluded.