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Varsity Golf Boys Set Sights On League Championship
Fachner pix
Escalon varsity boys golf coach Rusty Fachner offers some words of instruction before his players take the course at Oakdale Golf and Country Club in recent action. Dennis D. Cruz/The Times

Escalon High School’s varsity Cougar golf boys continued their trek toward a Trans-Valley League title this week in resounding fashion. By sweeping four crucial league matches, the Cougars moved to 8-0 in in Trans-Valley League play and 13-0 overall.

Escalon started its week by defeating Ripon at Oakdale Golf and Country Club on Tuesday. In beating the Indians, 237-259, Coach Rusty Fachner shared that he was a bit torn by the win.

“It is always great to beat a quality program like Ripon, and the fact that all of our players scored in the 40’s was a solid effort. My problem was that those scores were closer to 50 than 40,” Fachner noted. “Danny Bava was the only one who put together a consistent round.”

Leading the balanced scoring was Bava who shot 44 on the day. Nolan Rockwell, Steven Gately and Nic Lattig all finished at 48, while Nathan Sarkozy and Matt Spurgeon carded identical 49’s.

“Like I said, it was a win, and I will never throw away a win. But it was also pretty close to being very ugly,” Fachner reiterated.

Wednesday saw the Escalon linksters travel to Turlock Golf and Country Club to play a three-way match with both Hilmar and Hughson. The Cougars came out unscathed in both matches, beating the Yellowjackets 237-347, and knocking off the Huskies 237-258.

“It was a solid effort by the guys,” Fachner noted. “We really had to play well, as both of these matches meant a lot in the league standings. A loss to Hughson or Hilmar would have tightened the race considerably. We did a good job of keeping things together. Rockwell’s score really set the pace.”

Rockwell managed a 41 to lead Escalon, and Sarkozy followed with a 46. Bava continued his steady golf with a 48, Spurgeon came through with a 49, and Gately finished the day at 52. Lattig’s 54 completed the team scoring.

The Purple and Gold completed the week by travelling to Diablo Grande to take on Mountain House. Led by Lattig’s score of 42, the Cougars easily outdistanced themselves from the Mustangs, 217-329.

“I was really happy to see Nic come through and play such good golf on a really tough course,” stated Fachner. “Nic works so hard, and cares so much, that it was good to see him lead the way. Danny, Matt and Nate also put together solid efforts. I was also really happy to see Jimmy Wentzell play well when he got the chance.”

Following Lattig’s team-leading 42 were Bava and Spurgeon, who both came in at 43. Sarkozy added a 44, and Wentzell tacked on a 46. Gately’s 51 completed the scoring.

Fachner noted that, with four matches and the End of the Year Tournament remaining in TVL play, the Cougars really control their own destiny.

“I told the guys that I was going to push them hard over the next three weeks. I am demanding a lot of them. We have to be a little better. We have to play Hughson at Oakdale, and we can’t let down,” the coach explained. “We also have the tournament at Micke Grove, and we'll need another solid effort there. If we can put it together, and get a few lower scores, this season could end up being very special. It’s such a small window in winning championships. You simply can’t let those opportunities slip away, and we definitely have one within our grasp.”