Falcon golfers reach plateau

Jeff Strong tees off Thursday to start play during the Falcons
Jeff Strong tees off Thursday to start play during the Falcons' 292-304 12-hole victory over Oak Harbor at Useless Bay Country Club. Strong finished second with a 55 behind Shane Wells, Oak Harbor.
— image credit: Matt Johnson

Mick Heggenes admits he was spoiled during the first week of the spring golf season.

With the Falcon boys shooting nine-hole rounds in the 45s, he said, he thought some of his boys would be breaking into the high 30s by the time the sun came out in April.

This week, April started, but the scores weren't quite there, even as the Falcons won two meets at home and placed second in a four-way North Cascades Conference event in Bellingham Wednesday. It was excellent team golf, Heggenes said, but with his entire varsity lineup hovering between 40 and 47 strokes for nine, the team still has some room for improvement before the district and state meets in May.

"Even though we were consistent, we were consistent above where we should be," Heggenes said after a dual meet win at Useless Bay Golf Course Thursday.

That meet brought out both the lowest and some of the highest scores the team has had all year. Playing 12 holes against Oak Harbor, the Falcons outshot the Wildcats 292-304 as they were led by sophomore Jeff Strong, who stroked a 40 on the opening nine and 15 on the next three holes to finish with a 55. That was three strokes off the pace set by Oak Harbor's Shane Wells, who was the day's medalist.

Other Falcon scores included 58s from Bryan Wilson and Chuck Applebee, a 61 from Reed Dettrich, and a 60 from Bryce Hansen, who parred the last three holes of the day -- something none of his other teammates could do.

On Wednesday at the North Bellingham Golf Course, Strong, Wilson and Dettrich knotted at 44 apiece as the Falcons missed out on a chance to tag Lynden Christian early in the season. The Lyncs, who were led by medalist Andrew Evans with his 39, finished with a 220 team total compared South Whidbey's 221. Other Falcon scorers on the day were Hansen (43) and Applebee (46).

In a make-up league match at Useless Bay Tuesday, the Falcons had little trouble with Mount Baker, outscoring them 212-242 behind the 41s dropped by Strong and Dettrich on the front nine, Kevin Carter's 42, Wilson's 44 and Hansen's 46.

The Falcons are on hiatus for the next 12 days as South Whidbey High School lets out for spring break. Heggenes said the days off will provide a good break for his team, which he said has been competing too often during the past two weeks. The team plays next on April 16 at Useless Bay.

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