Seven golfers qualify for state tourney


The Mirror

It wasn’t the ideal conditions for playing golf, but it’s fall in Western Washington.

Rain and gusty wind greeted players at Tuesday and Wednesday’s South Puget Sound League boys and girls golf tournaments at the Gold Mountain Golf Complex in Bremerton.

The weather didn’t seem to bother the Decatur and Todd Beamer golf teams. The two schools combined will send five boys and girls to May’s Class 4A State Golf Championships in Spokane. Federal Way and Jefferson each qualified one golfer.

On the girls’ side, Decatur’s Sidney Solomonson and Jenna Rochelle and Beamer’s Koco Shin all finished in the top-six to earn berths to the state golf tournament. Federal Way’s Morgan Swanberg also will be playing in the spring. The senior won a tiebreaker to snag the 16th and final qualifying spot.

Solomonson used an impressive opening-round 83 Tuesday on Gold Mountain’s Cascade Course and followed with a 91 Wednesday on the harder Olympic Course to finish in fourth place. Shin followed in fifth with a two-day total of 175 and Rochelle finished up in sixth after rounds of 82 and 94.

The Decatur girls garnered fourth as a team, behind first place Kentwood, with a total of 585 strokes. Jefferson finished eighth with 645 strokes and Beamer was 13th with 694 strokes.

On the boys’ side, it was steady play by Beamer’s Thomas Jun that earned him his first trip to the state tournament. Jun, the SPSL Central’s Golfer of the Year, fired two even-par 72s at Gold Mountain’s Olympic Course Tuesday and Wednesday to bring home fourth place overall. Curtis’ Kellen Eakin was in a class by himself during the SPSL Tournament. Eakin shot back-to-back 5-under, 67s to finish 10-under. The total broke Ryan Moore’s record total of 8-under.

Also moving on to the state tournament were Decatur’s Eric Taylor and Jefferson’s Nate Blanscet. Taylor, who finished 11th at last year’s state tournament, rebounded from a first-round 76 with a 71 Wednesday to finish in a tie for eighth.

“It was difficult for Eric to get into any rhythm,” said Decatur coach Kevin Olson. “Eric had a rough first day, it was wet, cold and a very slow round. I was very proud of the way he came back and responded on Wednesday. He knew he had to play well and he did that right from the start.”

Blanscet shot two rounds of 74 to finish in 11th place.

Beamer, which finished in the middle of the pack during the SPSL Central regular season, ended up fifth as a team and Decatur was right behind in sixth. Curtis won the team title by eight strokes over Enumclaw.

Sports editor Casey Olson: 925-5565,

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