Shire golfers embark on new season

HOULTON, Maine — The Houlton varsity golf team has had a solid start to the season and veteran coach Dave Grant is optimistic the Shires will contend for regional, and possibly state, titles this year.

“These kids are very competitive against each other and are competing to get to the regionals,” Grant said. “I can only play five at the regionals and states so the five with the  lowest  averages will compete. I have high expectations and although we are young, I believe, with some hard work, we can be very competitive in Class C.”

Thomas Wilcox is the lone senior, while Collin Moody, Garrett Harvey, Kollin Irish, Owen Bolstridge and Alyssa Nightingale are juniors; Madalyn Quirk, Abby Fitzpatrick and Clare Prescott are sophomores; and Joely Stone and Silas Nadeau are freshmen. Nightingale and Nadeau are from Greater Houlton Christian Academy, while Prescott and Stone are home-schooled.

“Our primary goal is to qualify for the state tournament that is being held at Natanis, in Vassalboro on Oct. 10, but first we have to get through the Regionals that are being held in Presque Isle on Oct. 6,” coach Grant said. “To do that we are going to have to get our scores down in the 170s, which I believe is doable, with a lot of work and heart.”

Moody is one of the premiere players in the state and should do well in the individual competition, the coach said.  

“With some hard work everyone has a shot at qualifying for individuals,” he added. “The boys have to shoot 90 or under and the girls have to shoot 100 or under at the regionals to qualify for individual states. Our goal is to have seven qualify for individuals. The most I have had qualify in one season is four.

“The season is short this year and very different,” Grant explained. “Our score [at the County regional] is going to be compared to the other PVC Class C schools that are playing at Jato, in Lincoln, that same day, so we won’t know if we qualify for states until a day later.”

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