Big Horn junior Sam Johnson tees off. Senior Liam Germain works a putting green. Senior Nick Iskenderian was one of four Big Horn golfers to make it to the 2017 state tournament in Seeley Lake.Liam Germain, Nick Iskenderian, Delaney Pruiett and Sarah Maynard all made it to the 2017 state tournament and all four are back looking to qualify for the 2018 state finals at Fairmont Hot Springs May 14-16. Due to the recent flurry of cancellations, teams and players were granted an extra week to compete and qualify for the state tournament.

They started practicing in mid-March

But the Lone Peak team has yet to compete on real grass

The Lone Peak High School golf team practices in a construction warehouse near the Whitewater Inn where they use a hitting net and imagined scenarios to prepare for future competitions on real turf. 

     “We keep everybody moving,” said Big Horn Coach Jenny Wilcynski describing a typical practice. “Some days we focus on short game shots, and yesterday we focused on all woods.”

     This season, live competitive play keeps getting pushed further into the future as Montana’s snowy spring weather has led to a series of unfortunate cancellations. 

     Since the beginning of April, five scheduled matches—in Big Timer, Boulder, Townsend and Livingston—have been cancelled due to weather. But following spring break, Wilcynski—who played at Gonzaga, is a PGA golf pro and assistant golf pro at the Yellowstone Club—believes there’s a good chance her team will finally compete on April 23. 

     That’s when a two-day event at Cottonwood Hills Golf Club near Four Corners is set to begin with rival Manhattan Christian High School hosting. 

     “It’s always a duel,” said Wilcynski, describing matches against Manhattan Christian. “They have some up and comers.”

     On April 28, the Big Horns will face another rival—the Ennis Mustangs—and that’s followed by play at Fairmont Hot Springs on April 30 and Three Forks on May 3. 

     “We are excited to get golfing on the grass and see how the team does,” said Wilcynski. “It’s fun that these kids have golf professionals for their coaches. We all three love being a part of the community and school.”

     The other two PGA pros coaching Big Horn golfers are Greg Wagner and Nick Berasi, who both work at The Reserve at Moonlight. 

     All three coaches are excited about this year’s squad.

     “We’ve got a full team,” said Wilcynski. “Which puts us in a really great position. We have four senior boys, two senior girls. We have some strong returners.”

     Those include Delaney Pruiett, Sarah Maynard, Liam Germain, Nick Iskenderian and Sam Johnson. Filling out the girls’ roster are Brooke Meredith and Lyli McCarthy. On the boys’ team there’s also Evan Iskenderian, Pierce King, Ethan Parker, Sam Alvin, Kole Maus, Nolan Schumacher and Ethan Schumacher.   —DM

 

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