In one day, the Durango High School boys golf team shaved 14 strokes from its team score.
The Demons opened the 2017 season Thursday at the Montezuma-Cortez Panther Invitational with a team score of 35-over par. Friday, the team fired a score of 21-over at the Delta Invitational at Devil’s Thumb Golf Club in Delta.
Durango head coach Kirk Rawles said the biggest difference in the two tournaments was the course.
“I think there were more opportunities to hit more greens today,” Rawles said. “Delta is the type of course you can score really well if you keep it in play and manage the course.”
Aspen’s Dawson Holmes took medalist honors with a round of 4-under 68.
Aspen won the team title at 2-over par. The Demons finished tied for sixth with Gunnison and Cedaredge. Sixteen teams played the tournament.
After Thursday’s event in Cortez, Rawles said one positive of this year’s team is its balance and said any player can post the low round on any given day. That was the case in Delta when Luke Tichi, who was fourth of the five Demons in Cortez after shooting 14-over, shot the team’s low score with a 6-over 78. He tied Aspen’s Colter Zwieg for eighth overall.
Ryan Genualdi, 7-over, and Ethan Whidden, 8-over, rounded out Durango’s team score.
“I think they kind of fed off of what each one was doing – not that they can really tell because the course is so spread out,” Rawles said. “Our top three guys got in the zone and played well. They saw the shot that was in front of them and hit the shot they needed to.”
Luke Napier and Kyle Pritchard shot 18-over and 24-over for the Demons, respectively.
Durango will next play Thursday in Pagosa Springs.
“We play there every year with the team, so they’re familiar with it,” Rawles said. “Last year going in, Luke and Ethan and Ryan were on the team and we won over there last year. I think they’ll be excited to get over there and try to defend.”