Cathedral boys, SEU girls lead 1st leg of Tomahawk tourney

Staff photo by Travis Rosenau New Ulm Cathedral’s Owen Strei putts during the first leg of the Tomahawk Conference Golf Tournament on Monday at the New Ulm Country Club.

NEW ULM — The New Ulm Cathedral Greyhounds boys golf team finished Monday’s opening leg of the Tomahawk Conference Golf Tournament with a cozy 24-stroke lead over Minnesota Valley Lutheran, turning in a 331 team score at the New Ulm Country Club.

The MVL boys shot a 355 and were followed by Sleepy Eye United (376), Springfield (378), Cedar Mountain (383), Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop (408) and Buffalo Lake-Hector-Stewart (417).

The girls side of the opening leg was closely contested, with the SEU girls finishing just ahead of MVL with a 429. MVL was second with a 433, followed by Cathedral (446).

The GFW, BLHS, Wabasso, Springfield and Cedar Mountain girls teams were incomplete.


Staff photo by Travis Rosenau Sleepy Eye United’s Sam Price putts as Minnesota Valley Lutheran’s Jorga Brown, left, looks on during the first leg of the Tomahawk Conference Golf Tournament on Monday at the New Ulm Country Club.

Led by four upperclassmen golfers, the Greyhounds cleaned up on their home course. Leading the way for the Cathedral boys was junior Will Marti, who shot a 79 to finish the first leg as the medalist.

“The putts were falling, which was huge,” Marti said. “Short game has been on point. And just getting it to the green, really, has been the big thing. Other than that, that’s all it is, just hitting those spots.”

Starting off the tournament at the New Ulm Country Club was also a nice bonus for Marti and the Greyhounds.

“You can know a course, but your home course, the one you play on all the time, you know all the good spots, you know where you want to hit it and how to play it as well as you can,” Marti said. “I think being on the home course is definitely a huge deal, especially when it comes to knowing the greens. New Ulm’s greens, especially early in the year, they don’t really break much.”

Greyhounds junior Owen Strei turned in an 83 to take third, while seniors Joey Fingland and Ben Blomberg shot an 84 and 85, respectively, to finish fourth and fifth.

Fingland said he and his teammates settled in well as the day went on and benefited from their home course.

“Didn’t start all that great, but I think we kind of just settled in,” Fingland said. “This being our home course helps a lot. And the fact that this is one of the tougher courses in this area and since we play it a lot, it does kind of give us an advantage, we know kind of the speeds of the greens and stuff. And I think everybody just played their game today, tried not to let their emotions get the best of them, which is usually what our biggest issue is. That didn’t really happen to today, so I think that’s why we played so well.”

MVL senior Ben Pearson shot an 81 to take second, while SEU seventh-grader Nolan Kucera shot an 86 to take sixth. Pearson was joined in the top 10 by senior teammate Justin Ziemer, who shot an 87 to take seventh.

GFW senior Nate Teneyck and BLHS senior Sawyer Melberg each shot a 91 to tie for eighth, while Springfield senior Easton Jensen carded a 92 for 10th.


The SEU girls team, last year’s conference champions, were challenged consistently Monday by both of the other complete girls teams in the tourney in MVL and Cathedral.

At the end of the day, however, SEU did enough to take the early tournament lead.

SEU sophomore Sam Price, last year’s girls Tomahawk Conference individual champion, turned in a solid 95 to finish second in the first leg.

Price, who started the day on Hole 11, was disappointed with her front nine.

“I struggled with the first [nine holes], but I kind of pulled it together going into the second round,” Price said. “I wish I had a few holes that I could redo, but that’s just the game of golf and that’s just how it goes.”

MVL freshman Jorga Brown ended up finishing just in front of Price with a 94 Monday.

Brown, who attended St. John Lutheran School in Redwood Falls growing up before attending MVL, said she was happy to finish first on a challenging course.

“Today I feel like my attitude was very in place,” Brown said. “It was a very tough course, so I’m not saying it was really easy, but I’m really happy if I get to play it again, hopefully shoot a better score.”

Price said her putting kept her in a good spot, and while she ultimately doesn’t occupy that No. 1 spot on the score cards now, she knows there’s still more golf to play and two more rounds in the conference tourney.

“My putting really helped me today,” Price said. “On 9, I had a long putt for par and I sinked it and that put me only one under Jorga. Going into the 10th hole, I knew I had to get one stroke better than her, but it’s OK. I know the outcome isn’t what I wanted it to be, but there’s still two other conference meets to pull it together.”

Brown added that being able to get as many pars as she did helped keep her confident.

“Just getting pars, I think I got six pars and that was just a little boost to everything that I could do,” Brown said.

Also for the girls, Springfield eighth-grader Mavri Winkelman shot a 104 to finish third Monday, while Cathedral sophomore Alaina Blomberg turned in a 106, tying MVL senior Gabbie Bleick and GFW senior Jenna Schweiss for fourth. Cathedral junior Maddie Gilles carded a 109 to tie for seventh with SEU senior Meriden Andres and SEU junior Chloe Walter, while MVL senior Mackenzie Merseth shot a 110 to finish 10th.


Marti, Fingland, Price and Brown all said Oakdale Golf Club, home to Leg 2 of the tournament, is a challenging course. Price called it her favorite course to play at, while Fingland said its open spaces can make for windy conditions at times.

Regardless of how tough Oakdale can be, every golfer will be looking to put together their best scores and take a lead going into the final leg of the tournament.

Leg 2 of the conference tournament at Oakdale is scheduled to tee off at 10 a.m. May 1.


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