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Crook County High School boys team wins nine-hole tourney on Eagle Crest course

LON AUSTIN - Merritt O'Gorman chips during the Cowgirls' scramble event against Ridgeview and Redmond at Eagle Crest.

The OSAA season 1 spring sports season ended this Friday for all Central Oregon schools that were allowing competition.

Although season 1 officially runs until Dec. 27, the five Central Oregon schools that have so far elected to participate in competitions have agreed to divide season 1 into three equal six week sessions with spring sports followed by fall, and then winter sports.

Consequently, all spring high school competitions in Central Oregon are finished until next spring.

Golf was no exception.

Both the Crook County High School boys and girls golf teams were in action this past week, with the girls taking part in a three-team scramble on Tuesday at Eagle Crest Golf Course, while the boys played a nine-hole tournament on the same course on Wednesday.

Ridgeview and Redmond also competed in both events.

In a scramble, players tee off as in a normal round of golf. Golfers then choose what they consider their team's best shot, with all players shooting from that location. After each shot, teams again select which location they wish to play from. To insure that each player on a team is involved in the scoring, scrambles generally require teams to count at least two tee shots from each player.

Scrambles are not common in high school competition, but are popular when played as they usually lead to lower scores than any of the golfers could shoot on their own.

No scores from Tuesday's even were available as of press time, although Crook County's Cowgirls head coach Sarah Shinkle was pleased with what she saw from her team.

"Overall they played well," she said of her team. "I am excited for spring and to see how this team does. They are excited and they have a great attitude."

Wednesday's boys event was dominated by Crook County as the Cowboys finished 24 shots ahead of second-place Ridgeview. Crook County posted a team score of 165, while Ridgeview had a score of 189 and Redmond was a distant third with a score of 228.

After tying for medalist honors in Crook County's previous tournament, senior Hogan Smith dominated Wednesday's event, shooting an even par 36. Fellow senior Carlos Sanchez finished second in the event with a score of 40. Other Cowboys who counted in the team scoring were sophomore Palmer Smith, 44, and senior Cayden Lowenbach, 45.

Several other Cowboys also played in the tournament, with Alex Iverson posting a score of 47, J.J. Ramos a 49, Cameron Carr, 52, Tucker Bonner, 55, and Clay Wagner, 57.

Cowboy head coach Zach Lampert was also pleased with how his team performed this fall, but more importantly, since the team did not play in any tournaments last spring, he said that the extra practice and tournament experience should prove valuable when the spring season begins.

"I think it will definitely help," he said of the fall practice and tournaments. "It gets everyone some tournament rounds and the new kids got some experience while the older kids can get back into competition. If nothing else, we were able to cover a lot of the rules and basics that we would normally have to go over the first few weeks of practice, so we should be able to hit the ground running full speed in the spring."

Both Shinkle and Lampert are hoping that their players will be able to play additional rounds prior to the start of the OSAA spring sports season, which is scheduled to begin on April 19.

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