BOB WEST ON GOLF — PNG girls gain team, medalist berths in regional golf

Published 12:06 am Wednesday, April 6, 2022

When the District 21-5A golf regionals tee off later this month at Margaritaville Golf Club in Conroe, there will be less of a Mid-County presence than any time within recent memory.

The Port Neches-Groves girls, Nederland’s Kamren Savarino, who advanced as a medalist, and Evan Klutts, a medalist qualifier from the PNG boys’ team, make up the Mid-County regional contingent.

It’s a far cry from years past, especially where the PNG boys are concerned. The Indians went to regionals as district champions 10 of the previous 11 times a district golf tourney was played. Several of those teams/individuals would advance to state.

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PNG, in its latest district title defense, came up 13 strokes short of advancing last week’s at Chamber County Golf Club after shooting a 36-hole total of 675. Barbers Hill won with a 614, with Crosby a distant second at 662. The Indians shot 330 on day one, then faded to a 345.

Klutts earned his medalist slot in regional with a 163 on rounds of 78-85. Grant Doggett of Barbers Hill posted the low individual score of 146. Teammate Carter Massengale was runner-up with a 151.

Other PNG scores included Jaxon Wolf at 168 (85-83), Lake Edwards at 168 (83-85), Jeffrey Wolfe at 180 (83-97) and Paul Benton at 186 (94-92).

“I am proud of our effort,” said Indians coach Jerry Honza. “Our ball striking was actually pretty good. But the putts just would not fall for us. As far as individuals go, I am very pleased that Evan Klutts qualified to represent PNG at the regional tournament.”

Tatum Bean was the catalyst for a Lady Indians team that shot 599 over 27 holes to place second to champion Barber Hills’ 557. Weather limited the first day of the tourney to nine holes.

Bean tied for third overall with a 141 (47-94). Other scores for the Lady Indians were Ava Borne 148 (54-94), Jeannie Truong 150 (45-105), Taryn DeJean 160 (56-104) and Kassie Carpenter 170 (58-112).

Nederland’s Savarino punched her ticket to regional with a 151 on rounds of 54-97. Other scores for the Nederland included Mya Wimer at 160 (54-106), Kara Oliver 175 (63-112), Mariah Gonzales 191 (65-126) and Peyton Caywood 191 (68-129).

On the boys’ side, Nederland finished well back in the pack with a team total of 784. Nederland scores included Kooper Grant 186 (96-90), Ian Rashall 204 (110-94), Cole Broussard 206 (116-90) and Toby Berry 208 (107-101).

CHIP SHOTS: Johnny Page of Vidor ended a lengthy hole-in-one drought at Babe Zaharias Monday when he sank an 8-iron from 125 yards on the second hole. It was Page’s 5th ace, with all of them coming in the last two years.

The shot was witnessed by Tommy Prejean, Pat Kelly and Ricky Melancon.

PNG ex Braden Bailey played four solid rounds at the Mackenzie Tour (PGA Canada) qualifying school last week but didn’t go low enough to earn regular or conditional status.

Bailey posted a one-under 287 on rounds of 73-73-72-69 at the Wigwam Golf Club in Litchfield Park, Arizona to finish 42nd in a field of 112 players. A pair of double bogeys on the par 4, 17th hole were among the main reasons Bailey came up short.

Chris Stroud continues to battle injury woes, but this time it is not his back. The former PNG and Lamar great had to have a cyst removed from his right wrist last Monday. Stroud, who has 12 starts left on a medical exemption, hopes to return to the PGA Tour in six to eight weeks.

An injury also kept another former PNG and Arkansas star Andrew Landry on the sidelines. Landy, a former Valero Texas Open champion, had to skip the tourney last week at the TPC San Antonio Oaks Course because of a nagging shoulder issue.

Jeremy Blackwell of Beaumont fired an even-par 72 to win boys 15-18 by three shots over Brody Knowlton of Montgomery in the Southern Texas PGA Junior Tour event played Sunday at Henry Homberg Golf Club in Beaumont.

In the other Boys Junior Tour flight, Connor Williams of Kingwood and Chase Ion of Southlake tied for first in age 13-14 with a 69. Prasenjeet Ingole of Houston took the Boys 15-18 9-hole flight in Junior Links with a 58 while Barrett Knowlton of Montgomery took Boys 13-14 with a 42.

Boys Little Linkster competition saw Fletcher Bonner of Fulsher win 11-12 with a 57, Reed Rodriguez of Sienna Plantation grab Boys 9-10, 6 hole with a 34, Alex Sandoval of Livingston win Boys 6-8, 9 hole modified with a 50 and Grayson Ward of Lake Charles take Boys 9-10, 5 hole modified with a 29.

In girls Junior Tour flights, Leah Torres won 15-18 with a 75 and Makenzie Minshew of The Woodlands prevailed with an 83 in 13-14. Kamryn Pickard of Southlake won Girls 15-18 in Junior Links with a 45 while Anna Lee Mitchell of Missouri City took first in 13-14 with a 53.

Erin Eaves of Beaumont shot 37 to win Girls 11-12 in Little Linksters. Bennet Alford of Cypress won Coed 6-8 with a 29.

In the Senior 50 Plus Monday 2 ball at Babe Zaharias, the team of Bob West, Bob Byerly, Lonnie Mosley and Jerry Watson scored a sweep, shooting minus 4 on the front and minus 1 on the back.

Closest to the pin winners were Raymond Darbonne (No. 2), Richard Menchaca (No. 7), Charles Perez (No. 12) and Ron LaSalle (No. 15).

Golf news should be e-mailed to rdwest@usa.ne