"I was definitely pleased," first-year Spanish Springs coach Nick Wirshing said. "Like I'd kind of talked about before, we have not had a whole lot of practice, and still, I thought the guys really came through."
Spanish Springs golfers took the top two tiers on the medal podium. Cougars' junior Jordan Gilmore was the class of the field, turning in a 70 to win medalist honors. His Cougars' teammate, freshman Anthony Deckert, carded a 75 to finish second overall.
"Jordan has been there before," Wirshing said of his talented No. 1 golfer. "He really played a good solid round. And Anthony Deckert is actually a freshman. He was huge for us. To have him come out and knock out a 75, he's been playing really well in practice. I've figured out over the last week or so he'd definitely be one of our top 3 guys all season."
Carson Cooke (78), Jake Ellis (82) and Kevin O'Kuinghttons (87) wrapped up the Cougars' scoring contingent. Spanish Springs threw out its sixth score, a 94 by junior Matt Beebe.
Wirshing has a plan for his club over the next week, before it plays the second HDL spring tournament, slated for Wednesday at Washoe, but he isn't sure how much his team will get to work on it.
"The next few days we're supposed to have really bad weather," Wirshing said. "But we'll try to get out there as much as we can. We want to try and work on our short game and see if we can find ways to cut a couple strokes here and there."
Spanish Springs was not the only Sparks school in action at WildCreek Tuesday. The Rail City's other 4A HDL program, Reed, competed as well. Reed finished fourth in the team race with a 457. McQueen was third with a 445.
Jake Nelson turned in a score of 78, a mark good enough for fifth overall. He just didn't get as much help as his Raiders needed.
Colton King (93), Trevor Wood (94), Jake Day (95) and Anthony Shelton (97) made up Reed's scoring group. The Raiders did not count their sixth score of 108, put up by Dave Hibler.
"What we saw today was some kids showing inexperience and trying to do too much," Reed coach Danielle Fleiner said. "We had some kids put a little pressure on themselves instead of playing their games and letting things happen. We had three guys shoot in the 90s that are definitely capable shooting in the 80s."
Fleiner pointed out there is plenty to work on for her squad before next week's tourney at Washoe. The biggest focus will be improved decision making. She's also hoping the weather won't curb her club's ability to get to practice.
"We're hoping we the have opportunity to even get out on the course," she said. "One thing we'll do is work on the mental part of the game and not getting so down. We can't have unrealistic expectations. There's no such thing as a perfect game so you can't play for it.
"We have to handle bad situations and not dwell on them. We can't worry about what happened three holes prior. Hopefully, we'll recover a little bit better."
Next week's HDL tournament at Washoe Golf Course in Reno is scheduled to start at 11 a.m. Wednesday with tee times.