Wed, Oct. 16

Mingus Golf

Mingus golf has had its highs and lows over the past week. Last Friday, the Marauders finished second in their own Mingus Invitational at the Santa Fe Golf Course.

After the most successful golf match of the season, the Marauders returned to the Verde Santa Fe golf course for the region tournament on Tuesday and Wednesday. After a grueling two-day tournament against the other teams in the region, the Marauders walked off the course, with a fourth-place finish.

Only the top two teams advance to the state competition and the top five individual golfers proceed to the next level. Mingus fell short of a top two finish, but senior Pat Moran, for the third time in three years, will be heading down to Tucson to represent the Marauders.

The Marauders seemed to peak just one week early with the second place win at their own golf tournament on Friday. Prescott took first with 309 points, followed by Mingus just 10 strokes behind with a 319, then Flagstaff (321), Page (327) and Sinagua (328).

Pat Moran was the overall winner with a 74 on the 18-hole course. Nick Muehlhausen followed with an 80, then Alex Ronyak with an 82, a personal best. Ryan Rolland and Dillon Fielitz rounded out the top five with an 83 and 90 respectively.

After such an impressive performance at their own tournament, hopes were high for the regional match-up. Unfortunately, like the weather, the tournament ended up being anything but predictable.

On Tuesday, the Marauders finished in fourth place after half of the two-day regional tournament. An unpredictable event came at around the half-way point of the golf game when Alex Ronyak began to experience stomach pains and had to drop out of the competition. This left the remaining four Mingus golfers' scores to count instead of having the option of throwing one.

On top of Mingus' bad fortune, Flagstaff was having a terrific tournament and eventually grabbed the region championship with a two-day total of 639. Second place was closer than anyone could have anticipated when Sinagua edged out Page 658 to 659. Since only the top two teams advance, it was a definite heartbreaker for Page, the one stroke ended their season. Mingus finished in a solid fourth with 699 and Coconino rounded out the field with a 709.

Heartbreak didn't stop there. Mingus' Ryan Rolland shot a 170 for the two days and missed going to the State tournament as part of the individual top five that advanced, by one stroke. Moran, like last year, will be the only one traveling down from the Marauder roster.

Moran led the Marauder team with a 153 for the two days, followed by Rolland, then Muehlhausen with a 177, Josh Sauntman with 199 and Fielitz with a 106 on day two, coming in as the fifth player to replace an ailing Ronyak.

Moran received First Team All Region and Ronyak and Muehlhausen both received honorable mention for their terrific play during the season.

Moran will represent the final chapter of this year's golfing season as he will travel down to the Randolph North Golf Course in Tucson on Nov. 6 and 7.

Moran has improved his golf game from last year and plan on improving from his top 30 finish at last year's state tournament.

"He's more consistent with his drive," said coach John Uidenich. "He has been working on his short game as well."

Flagstaff's region win caps off four years where a different team has won the region title. Mingus won the region tournament three years ago, then Sinagua after that, then Page last year and now Flagstaff.

"It just wasn't our time," said coach Uidenich.

Coach Uidenich wanted to thank everyone again who supported the Mingus golf team this year, either as a fan or sponsor or both.

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