MARTINEZ: Actually ... there are lots of low golf scores out there

Tim Martinez: High School Sports

By Tim Martinez, Columbian Assistant sports editor

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A reader brought to our attention the outstanding match the Hockinson boys golf team had against Mark Morris on Thursday.

Led by Diego De La Torre (38), Jarred Gomez (38) and Nick Huff (39) on the par-36 Cedars course, the Hawks beat the Monarch 158-183 in the 2A Greater St. Helens League match.

"As I'm sure you're aware," the reader noted, "there aren't many boys golf teams in Clark County with three players shooting in the 30s for nine holes."

Well, last week, that was true. There was only one other team that had exactly three golfers break 40 in a league match. Camas had Brian Humphreys (37), Brett Ball (38) and Eugene Hsu (39) accomplish the feat on par-36 Camas Meadows. The Papermakers also had two other golfers come in at 40 and 41.

Other teams had two players break 40 in matches last week. Battle Ground accomplished it twice with Chad Hall and Tyler Betcher. Mountain View did it with Taylor Smith and Zach Ng. Woodland, not actually in Clark County but close enough, did it with Tanner Huddleston and Ryan Sturdivan.

Union had two golfers shoot par or better when Ian Spicer shot an even-par 36 at Green Mountain and Eddie Abellar had a 3-under 33.

Prairie narrowly missed joining that group when it had four golfers shoot 40 or 41. Heritage had a match in which three golfers shot 40 or 41.

And then there was Columbia River, which actually had four golfers break 40 in a match last week at Lewis River: Brandon Barnes (37), Reed Guernsey (38), Grant Guernsey (39) and Matt Cornwell (39).

So, on second thought, there are actually quite a few teams capable of having three (or more) players break 40 on any given day.

But that's not news for folks who follow golf in Southwest Washington. In recent years, it's been a hotbed for boys golf.

And this year, the golfers will really get to showcase their game in their own backyard as the state boys (and girls) state championships will be held at courses next May in Southwest Washington.

Golf fans will get a chance to see a preview of some state-caliber golfers on Tuesday at the Jeff Hudson Invitational.

The Jeff Hudson Invitational is the rechristened Thunder Invitational. Mountain View coaches John McCausland and James Peterson decided to rename the tournament to honor the former Mountain View golf coach who first organized the tournament and developed it into the annual showcase for top-quality boys golf that it has become today.

The tournament will tee off at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday at Tri-Mountain Golf Course.

Many of the names mentioned here — and a few not mentioned — are expected to compete together for top honors in the 18-hole tournament.

CROSS COUNTRY: The Jeff Hudson Invitational isn't the only event named after a former coach that will be held this week.

The second annual Bruce Flanagan Invitational cross country meet will be held Saturday at the Holland America Bulb Farm in Woodland.

The meet, named for the longtime Woodland cross country and track and field coach, will include runners from Heritage, Fort Vancouver, Hockinson, La Center, Woodland and King's Way Christian, among others.

Tim Martinez is the assistant sports editor/prep coordinator for The Columbian. He can be reached by email at tim.martinez@columbian.com or phone at (360) 735-4538.