PHS golf opens with Park County Shootout

Panthers Higgins, Wainscott notch 12th place finishes

Posted 8/20/19

The Powell High School golf teams opened the 2019 season Thursday and Friday, co-hosting the Park County Shootout with Cody.

More than 120 golfers representing 13 schools from around the state …

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PHS golf opens with Park County Shootout

Panthers Higgins, Wainscott notch 12th place finishes

Posted

The Powell High School golf teams opened the 2019 season Thursday and Friday, co-hosting the Park County Shootout with Cody.

More than 120 golfers representing 13 schools from around the state participated, making the event one of the largest tournaments the Panthers and Lady Panthers will compete in this season. Weather conditions were favorable, with Thursday in Powell overcast and breezy and Friday in Cody calm and warm.

“The level of play in this tournament was outstanding,” said PHS head coach Troy Hildebrand. “To make the top 10 on the boys side you had to shoot under 78 on average for the two days. The girls had to be under 93 both days to crack the top 10.”

Powell fielded a full complement of players on the boys’ side, but Mycah Wainscott was the only Lady Panther to compete for the girls, due to a team decimated by attrition and lack of experience.

Wainscott opened the tournament strong, breaking her prior tournament record by five shots and shooting a career-best 84 Thursday at the Powell Golf Club. Wainscott struggled the following day at the Olive Glenn Golf Course in Cody, shooting a 103 and finishing 12th. She came just two strokes short of the top 10.

“That was a tremendous start to her [Wainscott’s] senior season,” Hildebrand said. Although a couple poor holes in Cody bumped her out of the top 10, “much of the top 10 was made up of players from Casper, Sheridan and Gillette, which are 4A schools,” the coach noted. “I feel very good about her position in 3A.”

Rachel Stoinski of Lander won the tournament, shooting 80-79 for a two-day total of 159. Thunder Basin was the team champions with a 503 total.

On the boys’ side, Jaren Calkins of Lander defended his championship from last year’s Park County Shootout, shooting a 3-under par 141 (70-71). Kelly Walsh took the team title with a combined score of 608; Powell finished at 807.

George Higgins earned the top spot for the Panthers, finishing 12th. His two-day total of 156 included an opening round of 74 on his home course; after an 82 in Cody, he finished just one stroke out of a tie for 10th place.

“George had an outstanding weekend that just showed how far he has come in the past two years and also how much time he put in on the course this summer,” Hildebrand said. “He had four birdies in his 74 and really put himself in a great spot after that first round. Friday in Cody wasn’t quite as good, but he did a great job of hanging in there and posting a round in the low 80s for us. This should be just the start of a great junior year for George.”

Crandell Sanders finished second among the Panthers, carding an 88 Thursday and a 94 Friday for a two-day total of 182.

“Crandell had some bright spots this week but also found some trouble along the way,” Hildebrand said. “He has all of the golf shots and plenty of tournament experience, so he will just be working on some course management and confidence moving through the next few weeks. His best golf of the season is definitely ahead of him.”

In his first-ever high school tournament, Steven Stambaugh carded a two-day total of 219. His best round came on his home course Thursday, where he shot a 101.

“He [Stambaugh] is a freshman and already looks to be a player that has a lot of upside and potential,” Hildebrand said. “Getting him tournament experience and allowing him to see these other courses is the goal for him this fall.”

Sophomore Brandon Wentz shot a 250 for the tournament, and Hildebrand said this experience will be a good baseline for him to start from this season.

“Brandon does a number of other sports and has a lot of athletic ability,” Hildebrand said. “He just needs to get more time on the course and rounds under his belt to see those scores continue to drop.”

Rounding out the Panther squad was Jacob Thiel, who carded a two-day total of 267.

“Jacob got in a couple of tournament rounds last spring, but overall he is very new to tournament golf,” Hildebrand said. “He had some positives from this week, but overall he is another player that just needs to keep gaining experience.”

The PHS golfers will be in Worland Thursday and Friday for a smaller tournament.

“We may have the opportunity to take a couple of extra players along this week to get their feet wet in tournament play,” Hildebrand said.

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