Probably every player on the Osceola Chieftain golf team had hoped for a higher finish in Regional play at Bristol Ridge in Somerset. Osceola coach Pam Kaiser would probably tell you the same. The Chieftains were not at their best last week when they teed off against nine other area schools, but as it turned out, they were good enough to advance to the Sectionals this week in Hayward.
The top four teams at Regionals qualified for Sectional play along with the top three individuals not on a qualifying team. Osceola placed fourth and as a result extended their season at least one more week. Amery placed first as a team followed by St. Croix Central, Baldwin-Woodville and the Chieftains.
“As a team we placed fourth, allowing us to move to Sectionals,” Osceola coach Pam Kaiser said. “The weather, especially the wind, was a factor for all golfers. However, the rain held off and that was a plus.”
Osceola did have a comfortable margin over fifth place Prescott. Individual qualifiers include Mitchel Steele of St. Croix Falls and Bradley Sarauer and Johnny Bleskacek, both from Bloomer. The Sectionals, on May 29 in Hayward, will include 12 teams with the top two teams and top three individuals not on a State qualifying team advancing to State.
It was an extremely windy day for Regional play at Bristol Ridge. Most golfers had trouble coping with the weather conditions as well as some tight fairways. Scoring was difficult across the board but one golfer, Parker Griffin of Amery, was able to ignore the elements and score extremely well. Griffin carded a 75 which was 10 strokes better than the second best golfer, Steele of St. Croix Falls.
Sophomore Jacob Hall led the Osceola golfers with a hard-earned 89. Next in line for the Chieftains were juniors Drew Willeman and Nick Kremer with 93s. Ryan Leidle completed the varsity scoring for the Chieftains with a 99.
“Nick Kremer kept his cool and played well,” Kaiser said. “Ryan Leidle also played well despite the wind and kept a positive attitude. Jacob Hall struggled but still led the team in low score.”
There is not a golfer on the Osceola team who would make an excuse. They know everyone is on the same course on the same day. The bottom line is the Chieftains accomplished one of their goals, qualify for Sectionals. Now they can focus on their play in Hayward and see what they can accomplish there.