The Enterprise boys and girls golf teams grabbed first place honors on Friday at the Small Schools Invitational in Echo. The nine school tournament was an opportunity for local golfers to see all of the competition that they will be up against at district later this year. Enterprise senior Kevin Gomes led the boys squad shooting a 78 on the day. Kayla Miller led the EHS girls with an 88.
The EHS boys shot a 323 for the tourney defeating second place Echo's 337 by 14 strokes. Riverside finished third, one stroke behind Echo with a 338 with Wallowa ending the day in fourth with a 345.
The Enterprise girls ended the afternoon with a 419 strokes, with Riverside taking second and Wallowa placing third with a 517.
Rounding out Enterprise's scoring for the boys were Nathan Slinker 81, Derek Huff and Jake Thompson 82, Grady Rawls 84, Cole Phinney 86 and Wayne Polumski with an 87.
"We had our best group of boys at this tournament," said EHS coach Mike Crawford. "Numbers are good when you have seven kids that shoot an 87 or less," he added.
A devastating ankle injury that sidelined Rawls late in the basketball season didn't seem to slow the EHS senior's pace after getting his cast off on Thursday. " It took him a few minutes, but after four holes he got his act together," Crawford said. " It's hard to come off of an injury like that."
EHS scores on the girls side were Miller 88, Kayla Stoffel 95, Jessica Marcum 113, Lacey Nobles 123 and Tara Phiney 125.
"Kayla Miller is capable of playing at a higher level and should improve," Crawford said.
This was the first tournament for Nobles and for Marcum who is suffering from a wrist injury. "The girls were a little disappointed in their scores but will continue to get better as the season progresses," Crawford said. "Both teams are going through the same process of improvement as they get practice time in on a daily basis. You have to be able to adapt in golf, every shot can be different," he said.
Wallowa coach Marvin Gibbs was happy with his team's performance. " The boys are playing very well and should be in the hunt this season at district," Gibbs said. Luke Survis placed fourth overall with a 79 for the Orange and Black. Rounding out the Cougar boys scoring were Nathan Swift 83, Ryan Harshfield 89, Chris Jones 94 and Jeremy McCullough 100.
Lady Coug Holli Barton finished third overall with a 101. Angela Bombaci shot a 121 followed by Leah Pringle's 140, Crista Bomberger's 155 and Taryn Harris with a 161.
Gibbs said that there was some room for improvement with the girls squad, but overall they did all right. " I look for everyone on both teams to keep improving over the course of the year," Gibbs said. " Golf takes time, you can't be an overnight success," Gibbs added.
Also on the roster for Wallowa this season will be Dan Egan for the boys and Michelle Phillips, Bethany Robinson and Desi Piephoff for the girls.
Enterprise and Wallowa will travel to Union on Friday to play at the always challenging Buffalo Peaks Golf Course. The lynx style course will definitely separate the better players from the pack because of its broken fairways, difficult greens and numerous bunkers. Play gets underway at 12 noon.