Thompson Falls golf coach Michael Bates had high expectations for the individuals who qualified for the Class B state golf meet last week at Eaglerock Golf Course in Billings.
Bates had especially high hopes for his two senior golfers Dylan Beckman and Else Brown, and both Bluehawks, Lady Bluehawks golfers delivered in what would be their last 18 holes of their high school career.
Beckman finished fourth, firing a 76 on the first day and 79 the second day.
“The competition is always pretty tough when you get to State and Dylan played pretty tough at state,” Bates said. “(What he shot) was very solid.”
Elsie Brown, like Beckman, also exceeded Bates’ expectations for his team. Brown fired a 90-98 en route to her 11th place finish in the girl’s Class B division.
Bates was complimentary of both players for their contribution to the Thompson Falls golf program over the year and he said both would also be missed for their leadership roles.
“They’ve been two solid leaders for us the last few years and they will be hard to replace, for sure,” Bates said. “I am very optimistic about next year and other kids stepping up (to fill the void left by Elsie Brown and Beckman). Brown and Beckman are really good role models for them and we expect the same things from our kids next year when they start working their way up.”
Bates was complimentary of his other two performers at state: Ethan Brown and freshman Megan Baxter.
Baxter, a two-sport athlete in spring juggling track and golf, managed to have one of her top performances at State firing a 101 on the first day and 115 on the second day for a total score of 216.
“Megan played really well the first day and she played well for a freshman,” Bates said. “(Our golf team) is really proud of her.”
Ethan Brown, Elsie’s brother, also golfed well, according to Bates. He expects more of the same from Ethan Brown and the rest of his boy’s teams in a future season. Brown fired a 77 and 85 in the two-day event.
Bates said he remains optimistic about his team’s future headed into the 2019 campaign. The girls will be rebuilding and the boy’s team has a solid future, Bates said.
“I think we will have a bit of rebuilding to do and I think (next season) will be really good,” Bates said. “Ethan will have more experience and I expect him to play really solid. The other boys will be sophomores next year and I think we are going to be competitive.”