Tue, April 07

Mingus golf team finishes season

Mingus Union High School golf didn't have the greatest season. But, head coach Craig Mai has said he expected it with the inexperience of the team. Last week on Thursday and Friday, the team had its last match and tournament of the season.

Thursday, the team faced Flagstaff High School, Coconino High School and Page High School. Friday, the Marauders participated in the John Uideninch Memorial Tournament.

On the tournament for Thursday, the team scores were Flagstaff 149, Coconino 167, Page 177 and Mingus 193

Mai said he still feels the season has been a success.

"I would say yes," he said. "I'm going through our roster and we're playing totally different players from last year. So, that says we are young and inexperienced. I have really seen the improvement. Our three guys have been holding up the back end for us. Travis Nester, Ethan Brogdon and Tyree Kim have done a real nice job. They have gotten themselves done to where they're playing bogey golf and that was my goal for them by the end of the season."

He added that his team has done well at the top of his lineup.

"Bryan Valenzuela has done well as our leadoff man," Mai said.

He mentioned one of the things the team needs to work on for the future is accuracy.

"That's something that always needs work on," he said. "That's something that's never 100 percent satisfied. Unless you're Rory McIIroy, or Tiger Woods or someone like that. I've seen improvement there. The main thing that we're still struggling at times with is, I'd rather you take a little less club, play a little more accurate and not worrying about hitting it so far. I'm seeing improvement. That's something that we'll continue to focus on."

One of the improving Marauders is junior Chance Alexander. On Friday, Alexander described how he did on Thursday this way.

"I did decent, I guess," he said.

Alexander shot a 59 overall on Thursday.

"Hopefully I can improve today (Friday)," Alexander said. "Mostly just drives killed me."

Alexander mentioned he thinks he got off to a bad start in the season.

"Toward the end, I've really stepped up my game and played a lot better," he said. "I think I improved a lot."

He added he knows how he can do better for next season.

"Just put in a lot of work into the offseason," Alexander said.

Junior Bryan Valenzuela is one of the best and most experienced Mingus golfers. Valenzuela shot a 45 on Thursday.

"I made some mistakes," he said. "I started off good and then I just had this one bad hole that I just messed me up."

He added he thinks it's simple how the Marauders can be better next year.

"Just be more consistent," Valenzuela said. "I think we should get out here more in the summer. We can be a really good team next year."

One Marauder who experienced his first year of high school golf is freshman Tyree Kim.

"It's been a fun experience," Kim said. "A lot better than playing in Middle School."

Kim recorded a score of 48 on Thursday. That tied him with Ethan Brogdon for second.

He mentioned he thinks next year can be a lot better.

"I'm looking forward to next year," he said. "Because we're going to have a new freshmen coming in that I know have good golfing skills."

Another Marauder looking forward to the future is sophomore Travis Nester. Nester described how Thursday went like this.

"An off-day," he said.

He mentioned he needs to change things mentally.

"I need to keep it together after a bad shot," Nester said.

Nester added he agrees with Mai that the team progressed over the season.

Freshman Ethan Brogdon, is another Mingus golfer with a bright future.

"I was actually on yesterday (Friday)," he said. "I did pretty good yesterday."

He described how well he thinks the team can next year this way.

"Next year we can get on the board and do really well. Brogdon said.

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