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Piper golf teamMembers of the Piper High School golf team, who took second place at the state championship, are, left to right, Eric Pahls, Montana Fasching, Charlie Rinehart, Nick Delaquila, Blaine Smith, and Alec Wuellner. Coach Ryan McCarty is in the back. (Submitted photo)
Piper golf team
This year’s Piper High School varsity golf team was as good if not better than last year, says coach Ryan McCarty.
That's saying a lot. This year’s team took second place at the Class 4A state tournament at Cherry Oaks in Cheney, Kan., on Monday, May 20. Last year’s Piper varsity golf team took first at state.
“This year’s team did everything they needed to do and just came up a bit short,” McCarty said. “They played well enough to win the state tournament, they did everything necessary.
“They were edged out by Wichita Collegiate, they had a spectacular day,” McCarty said. “We played really great, and they were just a touch better than that.”
The Piper golf program, under McCarty for the past several years, has a fifth-place finish at state previously, as well as last year's state championship.
This year’s team had three returning from last year’s state team, including senior Charlie Rinehart, senior Montana Fasching and junior Alec Wuellner. They were the team leaders.
Also making a difference this year was Eric Pahls, a freshman. Wuellner and Pahls will return to next year’s team. Blaine Smith, a junior, also returns next year, as does freshman Nick Delaquila.
McCarty said Fasching had the team’s best score at state, with a 72. He placed third overall in individual competition. His 72 put him in the playoff for the state championship, but he lost the playoff.
Rinehart had a 74, for fourth place.
McCarty attributed this year’s team success to the individual hard work of the team members.
“It’s a great group of kids that spend all of their free time at the golf course working on their golf game,” he said. “They’re also really competitive with each other. They push each other to be better. They don’t like losing to the other guy in practice.”
Rinehart and Fasching will continue playing golf in college, McCarty said. Rinehart will play golf for Johnson County Community College, while Fasching will play golf for Kansas City Kansas Community College.