By Ryan Divish
With only one tournament remaining before the Class A state golf meet, the Havre High golf teams could easily look past this week's meet, except for one reason. They have to qualify for the state meet at Saturday's Central A divisional meet.
To qualify Havre must finish in the top four teams in its respective divisions.
"Making it to state has always been the goal from the beginning," said Havre High head coach Keith Evenson.
That should be very attainable for both teams. The boys team played superbly last weekend at the Flat-Fish Open against competition and on courses much tougher than they will face at the divisional. Plus there is a definite hunger driving the boys.
"They've been practicing very smart," Evenson said. "Anaconda's course is short, so the boys have been practicing position golf this week trying to set up shots like they would have there."
The Central A Divisional is being held at the Anaconda Country Club, instead of the Old Works golf course. Only one golfer, Trent Normandy, has played at the country club.
"Trent was the one who got them practicing for the course," Evenson said. "He really has shown great leadership."
Besides being the only person to play at Anaconda, Normandy is the only member of the boys team who has played in a divisional tournament.
However, Evenson wasn't concerned about his team's inexperience in that sense.
"The boys are just shooting so well going into this week," Evenson said. "I think they are going to do really well."
The boys team will go with same lineup it has all season with Normandy, Jon Johnstone, Chazz Hurlburt, Eric Ward and Ben Erickson.
Evenson is also very optimistic with his girls team. They played solidly, if not spectacularly at the Flat-Fish and are very capable for vying for the divisional title. While the title would be nice, Evenson wants his girls to focus on just finishing in the top four first. It should be very attainable because there is a possiblity that one of the eight teams may not field a full team.
"We have to beat three teams is what it comes down to," Evenson said. "I think we'll be fine. We don't have any real strong golfers, but they're very consistent."
The girls will be led by Amanda Brock and Heather Bowker, both of whom played at last year's divisional. Rounding out the team is Ryan Hamilton, Mikyla Veis and Brittany Job.
Dillon will be the top competition for both teams. The Beavers are solid players plus they have the advantage of having played the Anaconda course several times.
With temperatures only supposed to be in the mid-40s, weather will definitely a factor. As Evenson pointed out, Havre's fall has been very mild so his kids won't be used to playing in the cold weather.
Regardless, his teams are focused on making it to state, and the weather will be nothing more than an inconvenience.
Havre will play a practice round today, before playing in the meet on Saturday.