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Turnaround complete: Carbon High golf team advances to State Tournament

Dillen Ward, a junior, watches a drive on the fifth hole during Carbon High's home match on Aug. 23.

By KEVIN SCANNELL
Sun Advocate sports reporter

After finishing dead last in Region 12 play a year ago, the Carbon High School boys golf team made a goal at the start of the season to make it to the state tournament.

After a second place finish at a region meet in held in Fairview, the Dinos will be honing their skills in anticipation of advancing to the state tournament.

The Dinos finished second in Region 12 with a total shot score of 2335 behind Spanish Fork leading score of 2197.

Head coach Tom King said the accomplished goal showed the improvement the team made over the course of the year.

"This is a great accomplishment," said King noting the team finished dead last in region last year and were able to take second this year behind a powerhouse team in Spanish Fork. "I'm very happy for the boys and proud of them."

The Dinos were in second place in the region by one shot over Payson heading into the match hosted by North Sanpete on Sept. 20. The team did not play well but was able to finish in fourth place at the match behind North Sanpete, Spanish Fork and Juab. The course played a little hard for the boys as there is a lot of out of bounds on the golf course and the wind picked up as well, King said.

North Sanpete won the match with a score of 319. Spanish Fork finishing in second shooting a 321, followed by Juab (338), Carbon (341), Payson (343) and Delta (346).

"I would have liked to have seen us play better in our last match and shoot a score closer to a 320, but we held onto our one shot lead over Payson and kept our second place region finish," King said.

Robbi Etzel played well for the Dinos leading the team with a 78. Blake Bean shot a 86 followed by Dallas Anselmo (88), Dillen Ward and Nick Rukavina (89) and Kody Henrie (90).

The fourth place finish at the meet came after some tough course conditions with little room in bounds, King explained.

"The boys did not play outstanding today as the greens were a little tricky for them and a few of them had trouble keeping it in play," he said.

Individually, the Dinos also posted a number of top 25 finishes in region play. Etzel finished fifth overall and was joined by Ward (11th place), Freston Smith (16th place), Bean (19th place) and Anselmo (21st place).

Now the Dinos will prepare in anticipation of the State Championship held Oct. 1-2 in Roosevelt.

"We achieved our goal and that was to get to state as a team. Now we need to start practicing hard for state in a couple of weeks. We can not just be satisfied by going to state we need to be competitive at state. I have always told the boys the magic score was 320 or lower in region play. That number will not cut it at the state level. If we really want to be competitive and win state we need to be around 300 or lower for a team score and do that two days in a row," King said. "These boys can play good golf at times but they just need to keep their head together while they are playing. They need to understand they will not hit every shot perfect. When they do miss, they need to be able to recover from that and find a way to make a bogie at worst. We have had a fun team this year and I hope they can play well at state."




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