Roaring Fork Valley will be well represented at the state high school golf tournament in two weeks after Basalt and Aspen qualified with all four players during Tuesday’s Class 3A regional tournament at Carbondale’s River Valley Ranch.
Host Longhorns – whose roster features players from high schools from Basalt, Roaring Fork and Glenwood Springs – took the second and final qualifying spot for the team by pitching a collective 226 (best three player score) to finish just one stroke behind the Vail Mountain Region 4 champion (225).
BHS had three players in the top four, with sophomore Jackson Stewart and junior Garrett Exelbert each with 75 points to tie for second. BHS junior Jase Joslin was fourth with 76, and junior Alec Claassen tied for 12.º with 79.
Vail Mountain veteran Felix Gruner won the tournament by shooting 2 under 70, the only player to finish under par for the round.
Third-placed among the teams was Aspen with 233, well ahead of fourth-placed Salida (251). While only the top two teams won automatic team qualification, meaning all four players will compete in the state, the AHS still had all four regional golfers qualify individually, finishing in the top 13 players rather than on one of the two teams. qualified.
Seniors Sky Sosna and Carson Miller led the way, each shooting 77 to tie for fifth. Sophomore Ryan Rigney turned 79 and tied with 12º and veteran Peter DeWetter scored 82 to tie for 16º Place, put.
Skiers have long dominated the regional game – they entered Tuesday’s tournament having won the regional title 12 of the last 13 seasons, the only defeat during that period came in 2019 when they hosted the Aspen Golf Club (they finished runners-up against Montezuma-Cortez).
Still, Aspen heads to the state tournament as the defending 3A state champion. Sosna is the only returning member of that team, who entered the state as an underdog despite winning his first state championship in 2018.
This year’s 3A state tournament is scheduled for October 3-4 at Pinehurst Country Club in Denver.