Entering the week, the Escalon boys golf team was tied for first place in the Trans-Valley League. After a disheartening loss to Ripon on Thursday, the Cougar linksters find themselves in third and fighting for a playoff spot.
“Things can turn quickly, and that’s what happened with the loss to Ripon,” Coach Rusty Fachner commented. “We needed to play much better and we simply didn’t.”
On Wednesday, before matching up with Ripon, Escalon took to the road to play a non-league match against Orestimba at Diablo Grande Golf Course. The Cougars walked away with 231-300 victory over the Warriors. Fachner hoped that the trip to Diablo would help prepare his team for the future.
“I felt the match was important because we will be playing at Diablo Grande when we play an important league match against Hilmar. The league tournament and Sections will also be there,” Fachner said. “It was a good opportunity for our guys to get some experience and learn the nuances of a very difficult course.”
The day went well for the Cougars with Tim Wallace leading the way while shooting a 43. Zack Gardner and Nolan Rockwell both posted 44s and Nathan Sarkozy came in at 48. Brandon Levin and Danny Bava finished the day’s scoring with identical scores of 52.
“I was really impressed the way Nathan played since it was his first time on the course. His birdie on #9 was outstanding,” Fachner added.
On Thursday, Escalon traveled to Spring Creek in hopes of avenging an earlier loss to Ripon. It wasn’t to be the case as the Cougars dropped a 234-246 contest to the Indians.
“I was really upset with the way we managed the course. This match was ours to win if we had played smarter,” commented Fachner. “We talked about how we were going to approach the round, and then, for whatever reason, we went away from things that would have made us successful. We’re young and youth exposed itself. The thing I hope that we took from this round is that we need to listen to advice and use it correctly.”
Gardner tied for honors with a 42, and Rockwell added a 48. Wallace came in at 51, Bava carded a 52 and Sarkozy a 53. Levin’s 65 ended the day’s scoring.
“Despite the loss, if we finish by winning out and then win the league tournament, which we are fully capable of doing, we can still walk away league champs. I’m hoping that the Ripon match gave us reason to re-focus and do just that,” Fachner concluded.