Golf improves to fourth; rodeo places two
By J. LEVI BURNFIN
In harsh wind conditions during the Jayhawk Conference Tournament No. 2 on Monday at Turkey Creek Golf Course in McPherson, the Garden City Community College golf team shot a 622, slicing 12 shots off its first Jayhawk tourney score of 634.
The score was good enough to tie the Busters with Barton County in fourth place, two spots up from their sixth-place finish on Sept. 9 in Winfield.
"We got better, which is good, but we're still not where we need to be," said head coach Phil Terpstra.
Garden City was still behind tournament champion Dodge City and behind Hutchinson and third place Johnson County. But it was also still a sign of improvement, according to Terpstra.
The Busters not only got better from the conference first tourney to Monday, but they improved from the first round of 18 on Monday to the second.
They looked to be on pace for another back-of-the-pack finish after 18 on Monday, scoring a 314 as winds blew from 25 to 40 mph, but then took a big step forward on the latter 18 holes, dropping six shots to a 308 for the total of 622 and the fourth-place tie.
It was also a great improvement for the Busters' top two golfers, sophomore Matt LeGrange and freshman Alex Piper. LeGrange was tabbed as Garden City's best golfer entering the season but shot a plus-26 170 in the first conference tourney. On Monday, he dropped all the way to a plus-10 154 (75-79), tying with Piper (81-73), who also had a bad couple of rounds in the conference opener in Winfield, shooting a 160.
This time around, both golfers were in the top ten, tying for ninth.
With the rough conditions, Terpstra said, it was big progression to get two golfers inside of the top 10.
The Busters also were helped by freshman Mark Crossan's final hole of the day, the 17th at Turkey Creek. On the 269-yard par-4, Crossan knocked his driver onto the green, 15 feet from the cup. Despite not making a putt longer than 3 to 4 feet all day, according to Crossan, he sunk the putt for the eagle and a 78, finishing off his day with a 159 after an 81 on the first 18.
Sam Cooney also shot a 159 for the Busters, with a 77 first round and an 82 on the latter 18.
A pair of Garden City Community College cowboys placed in the first rodeo of the season.
The Busters traveled to Colby on Friday through Sunday for the three-day rodeo. Logan Vick and Zach Leininger finished in the top eight in tie down roping, the Busters' only placers.
"We didn't do the greatest," said head coach Jim Boy Hash. "I did see some bright spots. We'll be able to compete if they hit on the right cylinders on the right weekend — we'll probably be up in the top of things."
That wasn't the case over this past weekend, though.
Vick started strong, taking second in the long go, scoring a 9.1 second takedown of the calf. However, he missed the calf in the short go, relegating him to seventh. Leininger seemed to have sixth locked up with a fourth-place time in the long go and sixth in the short go, but was knocked to eighth with a penalty for leaving the pen too early.
"The horses there were really rank," said Hash about his stable of bronc riders. "The bucking horses out of Wyoming were big and strong and powerful."
The two scores were not enough to get the team into the top 10 team total as Southwestern Oklahoma State was first with 345 points. However, Hash expects better results in the Busters' next rodeo in Pratt through Oct. 4-6.
"When we go to Pratt here in two weeks, those horses will be a little bit more friendly," Hash said.