Golfers Pull Season Jekyll And Hyde

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Payson High School golf coach Bret Morse might be wondering which team will show up when his Longhorns take to course.

His concern over the team's achievement is due to the Horns up and down performances in past meets.

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Justin Shuman practices his tee shots during a home match at Chaparral Pines Golf Course, one of the home courses of the Longhorn golf team.

In one match, the team can resemble a state title contender and days later its takes on the aura of a league cellar dweller.

As examples, in a March 28 match at Aguila Golf Course and April 3 at Eagle Mountain, the Longhorns played as if they were championship bound.

But sandwiched between those two showings, at competition on March 29 at We Ko Pa course, the Horns were flat.

"We stunk up the world," Morse said. "It was terrible."

At Aguila, a south Phoenix course that will also be the site of the Arizona State Class 3A tournament, the Horns carded a 158 to finish second to state championship favorite Chandler Seton.

The Catholic school drew the praise of Morse by finishing with a sizzling 152.

"They are the team to beat (for the state championship)," he said.

On the par 36 course, Nate Blanco led the Payson parade with a 38. Brad Meyocks finished at 39 and Bryce Danielson posted a 40. Justin Shuman contributed a 41. In the play five, keep four scores format, Payson threw out a 42 by Nate Jones.

At the Eagle Mountain showdown, the Longhorns notched a 198 to whip a Fountain Hills team that had soundly thumped PHS during the We Ko Pa clash.

Rendering the Horns win even more impressive was that Fountain Hills, which scored a 217, was playing on its home course.

In the play six, keep five format on the par 36 course, Meyocks turned in probably his best performance of the season, finishing at even par.

Shuman tallied a 38, Danielson a 39 and Rob Gershman shot 42.

Jones and Blanco both finished at 43.

The Horns return to action April 12 in an East region regular season match at Holbrook. As the season winds down, the team also travels April 21 and 22 to the Safford Invitational to be played at Mt. Graham Country Club.

There, the team will try to duplicate its efforts of March 18 when the Horns won the Thatcher Invitational played on the Safford-area course. The Horns ran away with the 13-team tournament title besting runner up Thatcher by 24 strokes.

In the chase for the East region championship and a team berth in the state finals, the Longhorns hold the home course advantage.

The East tournament will be played April 26 and 27 at Chaparral Pines.

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