JORDAN - A tap-in eagle on the par-5 1st and a chip-in birdie on the par-4 2nd hole and Marshall senior Max Deutz had already put himself in prime position to defend his individual title and give a boost to his team during Day 1 of the Class AA state golf tournament.
Deutz got to 5-under twice during his round, but a string of five straight bogeys on the back nine extinguished his fiery start, and he finished with an even-par 72 Tuesday at the Ridges at Sand Creek in Jordan.
Most golfers would give anything to shoot 72 at state, but for Deutz, it felt like it could have been so much better. He finished in a tie for fifth, five strokes back of Detroit Lakes' Karter Smith, and his team sits in a disappointing three-way tie for sixth after an opening-day round of 312.
Photo by Matt Dahlseid
Marshall sophomore Matt Bennett watches his drive after teeing off on the par-4 8th hole Tuesday at Ridges at Sand Creek in Jordan during Day 1 of the Class AA state golf tournament.
For a golfer who won the individual title and a team that took second place at state last year, Tuesday's performance was not what the Tigers were looking for.
"There are no excuses," Deutz said. "I hit some bad putts on the back. I'm disappointed. I wanted to shoot lower. I know if I would have shot around 67 like Karter did it would have really helped the team. We'll be behind for tomorrow, but you can never count us out. I feel we can come back, we just all have to play well, real well. Every single one of us has to have a good round."
Twenty-one strokes behind defending champion Detroit Lakes, which shot a 291 Tuesday, it would take a near-miraculous comeback for the Tigers to overcome their deficit and attain their goal of a state title. They were hoping for a Day 1 score of around 295 or 300 to put themselves in position, but only got two rounds in the 70s from their six golfers.
CLASS AA BOYS / DAY 1
Boys Team Scores: 1. Detroit Lakes 291; 2. Staples-Motley 294; 3. Byron 301; 4. Hermantown 302; 5. Providence Academy 307; t6. Waseca, Marshall, St. Croix Lutheran 312.
Top 10 Individuals: 1. Karter Smith (Detroit Lakes) 67; t2. Tyler Baukol (Detroit Lakes), Logan Bashaw (Byron), Jordan Peters (Delano) 81; t5. Max Deutz (Marshall), Nick Forsberg (Staples-Motley), Olaf Walkky (Virginia), Josh Polingo (Litchfield) 72; t9. Andrew Israelson (Staples-Motley), Taylor Sunbom (Hermantown), Joey Dreier (NL-S), Drew O'Hern (SPA), Derek Ferrell (Duluth Marshall) 73.
Marshall Individual Scores: t5. Max Deutz 72; t 32. Brent Haukom 77; 62. Matt Bennett 81; t63. Alex Buysse 82; t63. Marcus Holmberg 82; t82. Matt Christianson 89.
CLASS?AA GIRLS / DAY 1
1. Detroit Lakes 308; 2. Minnewaska 335; 3. St. Croix Lutheran 345; 4. Providence Academy 354; 5. St. Cloud Cathedral 367; 6. Stewartville 374; 7. Hermantown 382; 8. Fairmont 393.
Top 10 Individuals: 1. Kate Smith (Detroit Lakes) 70; 2. Brianna Janu (Minnewaska) 75; 3. Anni Heck (Visitation) 76; t4. Trisa Hutchinson (Detroit Lakes), Kourtney Williams (Becker) 77; t6. Savannah Stone (Pequot Lakes), Emily Israelson (Staples-Motley) 78; t8. Matty Tshcider (Detroit Lakes), Kaylee Benson (Jackson County Central) 80; t10. Courtney Hedstrom (Detroit Lakes), Katy Bolduc (Lake City (Marja Sorenson (ROCORI) 81.
Marshall Individual Scores: t40. Hanna Peterson 90.
Marshall sophomore Brent Haukom shot a 5-over 77 to help Marshall's cause. He played at state last year as a freshman and shot 28-over par. After Tuesday's round, he said he felt a lot more comfortable, especially around the greens.
"I wasn't making a lot (of putts), but I just putted it close and had a lot of tap-ins," said Haukom, who is tied for 32nd. "My short game was really good. That kept me in it. I didn't get in any big trouble."
The rest of the Tigers struggled to find their consistency, mostly on the front nine. Sophomore Matt Bennett had a 43 on his front nine, including a quadruple-bogey eight on the 9th, and recovered with a 38 on the back for an 81. Sophomore Alex Buysse went 45-37 for an 82, and senior Marcus Holmberg shot 43-39 for an 82. Matt Christianson, who is a first-time golfer at state along with Buysse, shot an 89.
"(Buysse and Christianson) started off pretty shaky and that has to do with nerves and getting used to the type of situation they're in," Marshall boys' head coach Allen Lucht said. "I was surprised with some of the other scores of my top four players. I thought more of them would be in the 70s. Unfortunately, they didn't play very well and had a couple bad holes.
"Max was playing well and everyone else was trying to back that score up and what they did was shoot themselves in the foot. What they needed to do was settle down and play their game and not try to force things."
Deutz let his game come to him on the front nine. He eagled both the par 5s and chipped in from about 15 yards off the green with the ball below his feet on the par-4 2nd. He ended up playing the course's four par 5s at 6-under.
Although disappointed with his finish, Deutz said he didn't feel like he played poorly, he just said he missed a handful of putts and had two bad hooks on the back nine that ended up costing him.
Last year, the Tigers had the Day 1 lead before shooting 10 strokes worse on the second day, where they were caught by Detroit Lakes. This year, they're hoping to follow their lackluster first round with a sterling second round to at least give themselves a chance.
"We definitely need a little favor from the good ol' Lord," Lucht said. "Maybe a little windier situation where we know a little better how to score in that situation and get a little higher scores from the other teams. Pressure does come into play, and we do have some other teams with younger kids. It's going to take a little luck along with some determination from our players."
CLASS AA GIRLS
By Matt Dahlseid
JORDAN - Marshall freshman Hanna Peterson says she's just happy to be at the Class AA girls' state golf championship for the first time and hopes to do better in the future, but her first-ever round facing the pressure of a state tournament was nothing to scoff at.
Peterson shot a 44 on her opening nine holes (the back nine) and a 46 on her back for a Day 1 total of 90. The score puts her in a tie for 40th in the 88-golfer field.
There were a few butterflies early on, Peterson said, but they quickly went away as she got down to business.
"I had a pretty decent score on the back nine, but on the front nine I started triple, triple," Peterson said. "I played the rest of the holes at 4-over, so I just had a couple of bad holes and I was fine."
Detroit Lakes eighth-grader Kate Smith has the individual lead by five strokes after shooting a 2-under round of 70. She is the sister of Karter Smith, the Day 1 leader in the boys' competition, and her Detroit Lakes team holds a 27-stroke lead over second-place Minnewaska after shooting a Day 1 score of 308.
Marshall girls' head coach Nancy Blanchard followed Peterson, the team's lone representative, around the course on Tuesday and said she felt the freshman showed nice poise in her opening round at state.
"She hit the ball from tee to green really well," Blanchard said. "She had a couple of hiccups in there, but generally played very steady and very well.
"She had several pars, one double and two triples. She kind of lost her focus for a couple of holes, but recovered well and really finished strong. She had a very nice day."
Peterson's two triple-bogeys came on the par-5 1st hole and the par-4 2nd. Blanchard said Peterson can't hit all of the greens in regulation due to the length of some of the holes, but said Peterson can work on improving her Day 2 round in other areas.
"Some of it is just that mental focus, then we're hoping we can have her get some chips close enough that she has a legitimate chance of making the putt," Blanchard said. "Today, she got up and down one time, and that's because she made a long putt. I think if she's around the greens to get closer to where she can make the putts, I think that's part of her game that still needs a little work and hopefully she can get a little better feel for that tomorrow."
Peterson will start her final round today at 7:48 a.m. on the 10th hole.