Cougars closing in on league’s top teams

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By Michael Hicks

BROOMFIELD — No, Evergreen’s boys golf team didn’t win. It’s hard for anybody to come out victorious when you have to play the juggernaut that is Valor Christian match in and match out. But Mike Kuzava is happy, nevertheless.

His Cougars are inching closer and closer to the top teams in the 4A Jeffco League with each match. That was again the case at The Broadlands Golf Course on Aug. 19. Led by a pair of 6-over 77s from Taylor Shillingburg and Kyle Peterson, Evergreen took sixth place in the 11-team field.

Though that was middle of the pack, make no bones about it the Cougars are closer to the top — just seven strokes back of third-place Green Mountain — than they are the bottom, finishing 13 shots ahead of their nearest competitor. That’s reason enough for Kuzava to be overjoyed.

“This is the best I’ve felt about our team in a couple of years. Each tournament we’ve scored better. I’m confident the boys are heading in the right direction,” Kuzava said. “It’s the first time that Kyle has broken 80 in a tournament, high school tournament. We’re going in the right direction.”

And they’re doing it with some youth, too. Peterson is only a freshman and sophomore Sam Theil took fourth on the team with an 82. Junior Adam Zuckerman sandwiched in between them with an 81.

Maybe the only drawback for Kuzava is the fact that his team has to play against a team such as Valor Christian, which won the match with a 298 total -- five shots better than D’Evelyn. Valor Christian had five golfers finish in the top five, including medalist Wyndham Clark, who shot a 2-under 69.

“They are so good they’re not even in our league. The other guys we’re keeping pace with,” Kuzava said of Valor Christian. “If they weren’t in our league we’d be doing very well.”

As it is, Kuzava just needs to concentrate on his team. And from what he’s seen so far in 2010 there’s a lot to like. The Cougars are moving forward, in Kuzava’s words, maybe sooner than expected.


4A Jeffco League Match

The Broadlands Golf Course, Broomfield, Aug. 19

TEAM SCORES: Valor Christian 298, D’Evelyn 303, Green Mountain 310, Golden 316, Summit 316, Evergreen 317, Conifer 330, Wheat Ridge 345, Elizabeth 350, Alameda 416, Arvada 475

TOP 5 FINISHERS: Wyndham Clark, Valor Christian, 69; Dylan Mitchell, Summit, 71; Christian Rooney, Green Mountain, 75; Spencer Sheets, Valor Christian, 76; John Galgano, Valor Christian, 76; Chris Boehm, Green Mountain, 76

EVERGREEN SCORERS: Taylor Shillingburg 77, Kyle Peterson 77, Adam Zuckerman 81, Sam Theil 82, Braden Olsen 92