Young Tigers look toward a bright future
For being comprised of all sophomores and freshmen, the Morris Area / Chokio-Alberta boys’ golf team had a great year, finishing the West Central Conference season in sixth and taking third at the subsection meet.
Eight boys got some varsity experience under their belts this season, including newcomer Taylor Staples, Nick Boots, Carl Ritzschke, and Tony Bruns.
Staples scores fluctuated throughout the season, but did well for his first year said head coach Joey Fragodt. Taylor’s personal best was the 49 he shot during the Melrose meet as that helped him to average 58 over conference play.
Boots averaged 58, and shot a personal best of 52 at the home course in Morris.
Ritzschke participated in two conference meets, shooting a personal best of 57 in Paynesville.
Bruns averaged a 49, and shot a personal best of 44 at the Sauk Centre meet where he tied for 10th place.
Coach Fragodt hopes to see some consistency in scores next season from these young Tigers.
Varsity veterans included Russell Lindahl, Briar Peterson, Andrew Ulrich, and captain Jacob Zosel. Coach Fragodt hopes to see continued improvement in the next few years in hopes to work towards some titles for the MA/C-A boys golf team.
Lindahl and Peterson both averaged around 50 in conference action. Lindahl shot a personal best of 45 twice, in BOLD where he made top 15 and in Montevideo where he made top 25. Peterson got his personal best in Yellow Medicine East where he placed top 20 with a 46.
Ulrich golfed in the No. 2 spot for the Tigers, averaging a 47 and shooting a personal best of 43 in the Morris meet at Pomme de Terre where he tied for 12th.
Zosel’s personal best of conference action was a 39 that he hit twice, in Montevideo where he tied for fourth and in Paynesville where he took second. The freshman placed top 15 every conference meet this season, and took fifth overall in the West Central Conference to become the lone all-conference recipient for the Tiger boys.
“Jacob did really well when you look at the big picture,” Fragodt said. “A freshman competing at sections in the top individual group with some very good golfers, I'd say he did great. He was golfing with some of the best golfers in the state. I know he is capable of doing even better, and I'm sure that he will work hard in the off season to get there.”
For first time head coach Joey Fragodt, the challenge to compete against upperclassmen every week was well worth it, saying it was good experience to have the boys get under their belts now, so they can get rid of the nerves and improve for future seasons.
“Overall, I had a great group of young men that really enjoy golf and we're very coach able. They worked hard in practice to get better on some of their weaknesses, and I look for them all to improve on these small parts of their game in the offseason. The goal for next season is simple, and that is to improve on their placement in conference and to improve as individuals. I see no reason why this young team can't be very successful in the coming years.”