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April 29, 2010 3:39 am

Panther golfers fourth

Written by Tribune Staff

Cold, blustery conditions send scores soaring

The Powell Panthers struggled through adverse conditions Friday to place fourth out of eight teams in their home spring golf invitational. The Panthers tallied a 354 team score that left them four strokes out of second place.

“Friday's tournament was obviously the worst weather conditions we have faced all year,” said Panther head golf coach Troy Hildebrand. “The wind blew consistently between 25 and 40 miles per hour throughout the day. The temperature ranged from the mid-40s to lower 50s.”

Bullied by Mother Nature, the Panthers saw their scores soar upward, despite the luxury of playing on their home course.

Powell carded its highest score of the spring, but so did many of the other schools in attendance.

The one school seemingly not impacted by the weather was meet champion Sheridan, which easily captured the title with a team 304 score on the Powell Golf Club layout. Cody was second with a 350 and Riverton was one stroke back in third place.

“Sheridan has a very talented team and they really put together a great day in the tough conditions we faced,” Hildebrand said.

“We were disappointed to be so close to second knowing we didn't play up to our potential, even considering the weather.

That's something we can continue to work on and be better able to handle the next time. It actually looks like we may face very similar conditions this week at Riverton.”

Bryan Borcher tied for seventh place and turned in the low round of the day for the Panthers with an 83. Bowen Prestwich added an 88. Zane Bushnell carded a round of 91 with teammate Brian Morse one stroke further back. Colter Adolph rounded out Powell's varsity entries with a 94.

“Zane struggled in the wind after playing great in our first two tournaments,” Hildebrand said of the results. “Bryan played pretty well considering the day and was able to earn his second straight top-10 finish. It was good to see Bowen be able to post a score in the 80s on such a difficult day too.”

On the JV side, Zach Kienlen received a baptism by fire as he returned a score of 115 to the clubhouse.

“This was Zach's first tournament ever, so he really got a harsh introduction from the weather,” said Hildebrand. “As a freshman, he seems to have been bitten by the golf bug and has worked very hard to improve and spend as much time as he can at the course. I was really pleased with his score.”

Middle school golfer Pax Mitchell placed second in the three-golfer division with a round of 102, two strokes off the day's low score.

“Pax has played in a number of junior tournaments throughout the Big Horn Basin in previous summers and had some positive results,” Hildebrand said. “I'm pretty sure this is the worst weather that he has ever had to play a tournament in though. He did a great job of battling all day and posting a solid round in his first official tournament for us.”

Weather permitting, the Panthers return to action on Friday in Riverton.