Ben Andringa told his coach that he probably gave away 10 strokes on the greens alone. Quinn Westlake thought his performance was one of the worst rounds he’s shot in high school — or ever.
Still, it was one more round. And that was all that mattered.
On Monday, the recent Crookston High School graduates competed at the North Dakota High School Senior Golf Invitational, held at Fargo Country Club and open to senior boys and girls from both North Dakota and Minnesota.
Andringa shot a 24-over-par 96 (46-50), which was fourth out of the seven Minnesota boys who teed off, while Westlake finished sixth with a 30-over-par 102 (53-49).
“They’re high school kids. If they didn’t play really well, they’re not pleased,” said Pirate boys’ golf head coach Steve Kofoed. “But I think they enjoyed the fact that they were able to get out and play one more round together. The rounds that they shot were nothing spectacular for them … but the golf course was very hard and challenging.”
Neither Andringa nor Westlake had ever played at Fargo Country Club, which Kofoed described as a well-manicured course with small, fast greens. The course’s slope rating would rank among the most difficult courses the Pirates were scheduled to play this season.
Meanwhile, Andringa and Westlake had played very little golf since the COVID-19 pandemic took away their senior seasons in March — in fact, Westlake remarked to Kofoed that Monday was the first time he had walked a full 18 holes since last year’s Section 8AA tournament. The 90-degree weather didn't help matters.
“They were definitely not in a competitive golf mindset,” Kofoed said. “But they had the opportunity to go out and put closure to the year and hit some good shots. I think they both felt like if they were back there next week, they could easily be 10 strokes better just because they knew where they were going on the golf course.”
Kofoed heard about the tournament, which was sponsored by Bell Bank, in mid-May, when a Fargo-area coach emailed him with the details. He quickly sent them along to his two seniors, figuring they’d jump at the chance to play a free round of golf at a new course. He guessed correctly.
“Fargo Country Club and Bell Bank did a really good job of coming up with an idea to close things out for kids that who wanna come,” he said. “ … Being able to put a cap on something that was taken away from them, I thought it was a pretty sweet deal for them today.”
Hunter Burnside of Detroit Lakes led the Minnesota boys by shooting a 10-over 82. Shelby Busker, also of Detroit Lakes, topped the Minnesota girls’ division with an even-par 72.
Fargo’s Ty Satter, Kindred’s Mark Olson and Hillsboro’s Tiffany Kozojed won the North Dakota Class A Boys, Class B Boys and Girls Divisions, respectively.
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