Mingus boys golf off to strong start

Mingus sophomore Carter Welly tees off during the Marauders’ home match against Bradshaw Mountain, Mohave and Page. Despite entering the season without a lot of varsity expereince, Welly has impressed at the No. 4 spot.  VVN/James Kelley

Mingus sophomore Carter Welly tees off during the Marauders’ home match against Bradshaw Mountain, Mohave and Page. Despite entering the season without a lot of varsity expereince, Welly has impressed at the No. 4 spot. VVN/James Kelley

Despite being mostly inexperienced heading into the season, Mingus Union gentleman’s golf is off to fast start.

The Marauders currently lead their 10-team section, Division II Section VII.

“I think we’re off to a great start, I’m very very pleased,” head coach Craig Mai said.

After rain postponed their first match, the Marauders opened at Prescott Country Club against Lee Williams and Bradshaw Mountain. Sophomore Treyson Peters (+3) lead the way for MUHS.

Then the Marauders hosted Bradshaw Mountain, Mohave and Page at then named Verde Santa Fe. Junior Noah Daher won, with a -1.

Then at Antelope Hills Golf Course, the Marauders took on Prescott and Kingman, with Daher again winning, this time with a +2.

The Marauders are off to the strong start even though senior and No. 1 Justin Tanner and Daher are the only returnees with significant varsity experience last year.

Mai said up and down the line the Marauders have impressed him.

“Noah Daher has won our last two events, that’s been fantastic seeing him finally being able to put complete rounds together,” Mai said.

Even though the coaches had high expectations for Peters, he has met and surpassed them.

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Mingus senior Justin Tanner putts during the Marauders’ home match against Bradshaw Mountain, Mohave and Page. Tanner is the Marauders’ No. 1 VVN/James Kelley

Mai thinks Tanner is ready to break out.

“He’s just been so close to putting together some really fantastic rounds, just a mistake or two here and there has hurt him,” Mai said. “I know he’s going to find a way to finish off and put those rounds together, so I’m excited for that.”

Even though sophomore Carter Welly was pretty inexperienced to start the season, he has filled in at the No. 4 slot for the Marauders.

The strong start also comes despite the weather limitations Mingus Union has had.

“This year’s been crazy,” Mai said. “Last year we did not have a single practice or cancelled or postponed and we’ve probably had five or six practices and our first match had to be moved and our match (Tuesday) in Prescott almost got cancelled, we were able to just kinda wait it out for an hour and get back on the course and finish just before daylight ended. It’s been crazy but it’s really nice to see all the moisture we’ve been getting here in Northern Arizona, that’s been fantastic.”

This Friday the Marauders head south to the Aguila Open at the Aguila Golf Course in Laveen Village.

“That’s always a good experience for the kids to see some really tough competition, see a tough course that has held state championships before,” Mai said.

The Mingus Union has a few trips to Flagstaff, one to Page, Mohave and Prescott and one home match before hosting the John Uidenich Memorial Invitational on Oct. 13.

“It’s a nice mix of a couple matches up in Flag and then and at home and then we go to Page and then we start wrapping up the season,” Mai said.

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