South Whidbey golfers extend winning streak against ATM

The Falcon boys golf team is burning up the greens this season, winning all of their games to date. On March 26, the South Whidbey team was asked to join 16 bigger 4A schools at the Dolan Invitational match at Everett Golf Club.

  • Wednesday, April 4, 2007 5:00pm
  • Sports

The Falcon boys golf team is burning up the greens this season, winning all of their games to date.

On March 26, the South Whidbey team was asked to join 16 bigger 4A schools at the Dolan Invitational match at Everett Golf Club.

The Falcons returned the favor by placing seventh — even though tee-off began at tournament-level black pins, which increase the distance on the hole and make each round that much harder, Falcon Coach Steve Jones said.

“But our guys shake off any problems and take everything in stride,” Jones said.

Nathan Kamps medaled with a 79, both Blake Blakey and Juan Fernandes finished with 80, Jensen Connor had an 87 and John Lindsay finished at 88.

Two days later, the team beat Kings 211-228. But that was just the prelude for a major match-up with arch rival Archbishop Murphy.

On March 29, the boys overcame ATM 190-213, almost setting a school record in the process.

“ATM’s coach told me he’d never seen scores as low as these after 18 years of coaching,” Jones said. “In fact, it was the second lowest score for us in school history — in 2002 the team shot a 186 and these guys have the ability to beat that.”

Blakey medaled with 37, Fernandes, Connor and Lindsay shot 38 and Kamps had a 39.

It hasn’t been an easy year for Blakey, the only golfer to qualify for state in 2006.

“My swing isn’t there yet but I’m working on it,” he said at practice on Monday. “It’s all about repetition, that’s the key.”

Blakey is hoping to peak by the time district and league championships begin in May.

It’s a long way from the Columbian city of Cucuta, but exchange student Fernandes has found the transition easier than expected, despite the climate.

“The weather is a lot colder here sometimes, that is true,” he said. “But I like very much this course and the people who play here.”

In Columbia, high schools don’t have golf teams.

“Sometimes, you play for the honor of representing your country,” Fernandes said. “In 2004 I represented Columbia at a tournament in Brazil.”

Overall, Fernandes has found his fellow students and teammates welcoming. “I’m very happy to be here, to be in this country.”

For Connor, his ability to be more consistent is equal parts mental game and help from Useless Bay’s golf pro.

“Craig Patterson has really helped get me on course with my swing,” he said. “I’ve improved a lot since last year.”

Lindsay has found that playing in the summer makes a big difference.

“I shoot four or five times a week with my family,” he said. “What I like about golf is that it can never be mastered, never beaten. On any given day you can shoot a low or high score. It never gets old.”

On April 12, the boys travel to Sultan, then welcome Kings to Whidbey on April 26.

Jeff VanDerford can be reached at 221-5300 or sports@southwhidbeyrecord.com.

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