DENVER — Jonathan Roberts likes playing at Wellshire Golf Club, and it showed Aug. 7 in the six-team 3A Mile High League tournament opener. The Front Range Christian junior carded a career-best 15-over-par 86 in the weather-delayed 2014 season debut.
He shot a 45 on a grueling front nine before settling in for a 41 over the final nine holes to place eighth in a field of 24 golfers.
“I was hoping to shoot right around what I got, so I’m pretty satisfied,” Roberts said.
Though Roberts admitted that his putting game has been a little off this preseason, he’s been working on that, and he got it down, especially on the back stretch. His effort pleased Front Range Christian head coach Jeff Sloan.
“He’s actually never broke 90 before, and he even had a two-stroke penulty, so we’re pretty happy,” Sloan said.
It was the lone bright spot for the Falcons, who placed fourth out of five teams with a score of 303. Defending 3A state champion Alexander Dawson edged Resurrection Christian 242-244 for team honors. Strasburg was fourth with a 261, and Denver Academy came in fifth with a 326. Denver Christian wasn’t eligible to score as a team, with just two golfers participating.
Considering the Falcons had three first-time varsity players — junior Joe Simonitis (107), senior Connor Little (110) and sophomore Ben Poppe (113) — teeing off alongside Roberts, it was a starting point from which Sloan hopes they will only get better.
“Our goal is to break 100,” Sloan said. “If we can do that, then we’re progressing, and (I think) they will.”
Cole Folwell of Alexander Dawson and Harrison Turner of Resurrection Christian shared top medalist honors, each carding a 1-over-par 72 on the 6,498-yard course. Denver Christian’s Cole Chalmers and Resurrection’s Warren Turner tied for third with an 8-over 79.
The tournament was scheduled for a noon start, but it was delayed shortly after the first group teed off by an hour and 15 minutes due to inclement weather. Neither Roberts nor Sloan, however, thought that it played a factor in his play individually or the team’s effort.
“I don’t think it really affected me much,” Roberts said.
Contact Michael Hicks at firstname.lastname@example.org or 303-933-2233, ext. 15.