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Peterson, Cougars off to a fast start

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Conifer struggles in season opener

By Michael Hicks

WESTMINSTER — Kyle Peterson called it a shaky start. His swing wasn’t there and a feeling overcame the Evergreen senior golfer that this might not be his day. Then there was a birdie, then another and two more to follow on the back nine. The 4A Jeffco League opener at Hyland Hills Golf Course turned around just that quickly.
“That’s golf. Even with a shaky start, through six holes, I still came back, and I could’ve easily broke par,” Peterson said. “There’s always plenty of golf to play. When it’s a shaky start, you just have to grind it out and find a way to make up those strokes.”
Peterson did that with birdies on Nos. 7, 9, 12 and 15 to put him at 2-under before he bogeyed No. 17 and double bogeyed No. 18. Still, he was one of three Evergreen golfers to finish in the top four, firing a tournament-best 1-over 73 on Aug. 14. Fellow senior Kyle Malazdrewicz carded a 2-over 74 and freshman Liam Short, in his high school debut, shot a 3-over 75 as Evergreen, as a team, shot a 305 total to win the season opener by 14 strokes over D’Evelyn.
“I expected good play, and we got it. It’s a nice thing to have,” Evergreen head coach Mike Kuzava said. “We have some guys that are so dedicated that it pays off. We just have to keep on trying to get better.”
That might be easier said than done considering the way Evergreen opened up, but it’s a goal that they’ll shoot for nonetheless.
“This is just a good group of guys. We expect to do well every week. It will be a little harder to do better, but I think for us, a good score in this type of a tournament is under 300. We still have some work to do and our (No.) 4 and 5 guys need to do better for us to be running on all cylinders,” Kuzava said.
Senior Luke Hadsell and freshman Lenny Urbas carded an 83 and 85, respectively, to give the Cougars five of the top 12 scores in the field of 32.
There were some pretty tough holes, Short said, particularly No. 17 and 18, but he played well enough to finish just two strokes back of Peterson.
“It was a lot of fun. I played really well,” Short said.
Conifer shot 399, led by senior Chris Ostberg, who shot a 23-over 95. Junior Matt Bluestein carded a 98, followed by Spencer Greenwood (101), Jack Richey (105) and Lane Kronemeyer (109). It wasn’t the start the Lobos would’ve liked, but it gives them something to improve upon.
“You just try to be better than you were in the last round,” Ostberg said.

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Contact Michael Hicks at sports@evergreenco.com or 303-933-2233, ext. 15.