The Havre High boys and girls golf teams opened the season under beautiful summer conditions last month at Prairie Farms Golf Course.
And it looks like the Ponies will get the same treatment at their own invitational this weekend. On Saturday at Beaver Creek Golf Course, the Blue Ponies will host the Havre Invitational and the weather forecast couldn’t be better.
But just as important, Havre is more than halfway through its season and playing at home for the final time in 2012.
The Ponies are entering a busy stretch which has them in Lewistown today, before welcoming the Eagles, Browning, some Great Falls junior varsity players and Swiftcurrent Academy of Saskatchewan on Saturday at BCGC. After the Havre Invite, the ponies will prep for just a few days before heading to two tournaments in the Billings area next week.
But first things first, the Ponies get a chance to hone their skills on a familiar layout Saturday. Beaver Creek is a wide open course, but driving is still at a premium because the course is protected by water hazards on almost every hole, as well as out-of-bounds on holes 4-9. It’s a tough test for high school golfers and it will be a great test for the Havre Invite Saturday.
And the Ponies should do well at home.
The Havre girls are still a younger team, but have been playing well as of late. Boston Swensen has three Top 10’s this season and Katie Beck is coming off a personal best score in Browning last weekend. She also has three Top 10 finishes. Swensen led the Ponies last weekend in Browning, while Beck led Havre the week before on the same course. Dani Murphy and freshmen Peyton Howard and Randi Gabrielsen also have Top 10’s to their credit this season, and Pony head coach McKinsey Rodriguez said recently that this is the best girls squad he’s had in three years.
Meanwhile, the HHS boys are coming on strong too. Havre has a dynamic varsity of which seniors David Denny, Ramsey Drew and Spencer Ross all at least have one Top 10 finish this season, while freshmen Jeff Miller and Jerod Boles both have multiple Top 10’s and finished tied for first at last weekend’s Browning Invitational at East Glacier.
The boys team will get a swift challenge from Swiftcurrent, which has won the last four team titles at the Havre Invite. Lewistown is also strong on the boys side, while the Lewistown girls will likely give the Ponies their biggest challenge on Saturday.
And though both Havre teams will be severely tested by the course and their opponents, it’s an exciting weekend for HHS golfers, both varsity and junior varsity, because it’s their invitational.
Saturday’s Havre Invitational golf tournament is set to begin with a shotgun start at 9:30 a.m. at BCGC. The forecast is calling for lots of sunshine, a high of 86 degrees and calmer conditions.