TWIN LAKES - Surprise, surprise: Jeffers won a Copper Country Conference golf meet.
Several CCC contenders tried one final time Wednesday to prevent a Jets' boys and girls season conference sweep, but Jeffers' depth and home-course advantage was too much to overcome in the final CCC meet of the year at Wyandotte Hills Golf Club & Resort.
Jeffers' Tyler Bailey carded an 18-hole 75 to earn medalist honors for his fourth straight meet, and Jets' No. 3 golfer Alyssa Taavola tallied a career-best nine-hole 53 to take top girls honors. Jeffers' boys beat second-place Lake Linden-Hubbell 319-344, while the girls edged Ontonagon 226-238.
Jeffers’ Tyler Bailey putts on the par-four fourth hole during Wednesday’s final Copper Country Conference golf meet of the year at Wyandotte Hills Golf Club & Resort. Bailey earned medalist honors with a 75 and Jeffers won the boys’ competition with a 319 team score. (DMG photo by Stephen Anderson)
"I'm definitely pleased. I couldn't ask for a whole lot better," Jeffers coach Jason Koski said. "Give a lot of credit to the kids and the course out at Wyandotte."
Not like Jeffers' golfers needed to shave too many strokes, but the experience from playing free rounds at their home course showed in the way they strategically placed tee shots around dogleg corners and avoided the countless fairway trees that dot the hilly course.
"The kids are very familiar with the course and it plays a little different from other courses," Koski said. "Really it's just about the comfort level, like basketball shooting on your home court."
JEFFERS (319) - Tyler Bailey 75, Stephen Butina 79, Alex Outinen 82, Christopher Outinen 83
LAKE LINDEN-HUBBELL (344) - Trevor Ongie 77, Cody Kunnari 85, Cole Beauchamp 86, Brett Poissant 96
ONTONAGON (354) - Brandon Jilbert 83, Joe Pollard 88, Dave Pollard 90, Travis Huotari 93
CHASSELL (413) - Josh Pietila 101, Matt Marshall 102, Jordan LaTendresse 103, Zac Mills 107
BARAGA (NTS) - Jon Kaster 94, Dustin Juntunen 100, Bill Mayo 115
JEFFERS (226) - Alyssa Taavola 53, Brittany Nicholas 55, Shelby Seppanen 56, Lindsay Kin 62
ONTONAGON (238) - Chloe Ashley 55, Abby Domitrovich 58, Carly Adams 62, Kristie Kioski 63
BARAGA (290) - Rebecca Larson 60, Terra Fish 75, Kelli Massie 76, Gabby Mayo 79
That comfort level led to consistent scores for several Jets' golfers, including Bailey, a sophomore who had 38 the first time through the nine-hole course and 37 the second time. No. 3 golfer Stephen Butina scored 39 and 40, Alex Outinen 40 and 42, Christopher Outinen 42 and 41, and Matt Zerbst, the only senior on the team a pair of 42s from the No. 2 spot.
"Tyler is really on a hot streak ... but all those guys have been pretty consistent," Koski said.
LL-H's Trevor Ongie finished second individually among boys with a 77, with the next best Lakes finisher, Cody Kunnari, carding an 85. Ontonagon finished third overall among boys with a 354 team score, led by Brandon Jilbert's 83. No. 1 and 2 Gladiator golfers Kody Farley and Travis Huotari scored 96 and 93, respectively.
"Today we stumbled a little bit," Ontonagon coach Jim Bobula said. "Our top guys came in a little higher. That's the way the game of golf goes sometimes. ... We don't have any meets next week, so we're just going to get out, relax and play and get it back to being fun. I'm hoping our kids can get through this little bit of adversity."
Chassell finished fourth among boys with a 413 with all scores in the triple digits. Baraga's Jon Kaster carded a 94, but the Vikings did not have enough golfers to earn a team score.
The surprise score of the day came on the girls' side from Taavola (53), who typically golfs from the No. 4 or 5 spot but moved up to No. 3 recently with Bryana Riutta out of town on a physics class trip.
"She's been on the team since freshman year, and today it just all clicked," Koski said. "I was really happy for her. She hasn't shot a score that low, and she did it on her home course in her final conference meet as a senior."
Girls' No. 1 golfers Brittany Nicholas from Jeffers and Chloe Ashley from Ontonagon carded matching 55s, but Taavola's performance nullified the need for a playoff hole.
"At this course I wanted to do better because it's my home course," Nicholas said. "(All three No. 1 girls) had off days today. It was a weird round of golf."
Baraga's Rebecca Larson rounded out the No. 1 group with a 60, two days after carding a medalist-winning 53 at the Lake Linden-Hubbell Invite in Calumet. The Viking girls scored third place with a 290 team score. No other girls teams competed.
Shelby Seppanen and Lindsay Kin rounded out Jeffers' top four scores with a 56 and 62, respectively.
For the Gladiators, after Ashley's 55, Abby Domitrovich tallied a 58, followed by a 62 and 63 from Carly Adams and Kristie Kioski, respectively.
"Jeffers has beat us every time," Ashley said. "We have lots of improvements to make and it's just a matter of getting out on the course the next two weeks before U.P. Finals."
There are no more CCC meets leading into U.P. Finals (May 31 in the Gladstone area), but several WestPAC meets will take place before then, starting with today's WestPAC Calumet Invite.