Generals place third in home golf tournament

Yash Desai

NEW MARKET — There’s no place like home.

Stonewall Jackson’s golf team took advantage of playing on its home course Monday to shoot a 337 in the Shenandoah District mini-tournament at Shenvalee. The Generals placed third as a team. East Rockingham won the tourney with a 323, followed by Wilson Memorial with a 336.

“It’s a big advantage, because we know how to get around the course,” Stonewall Jackson’s Yash Desai said. “Everyone in my group was asking me where to go and it was kind of funny telling them where to hit.”

“I know the greens so well, at this point I could probably putt with my eyes closed on these greens,” Stonewall Jackson’s Lukas Fultz said.

Desai and Fultz each shot an 80 to lead the Generals. Nick Dotson shot an 86 and Kayley Romick shot a 91.

Fultz said he struggled on the front nine but finished strong. He said he made par on the first six holes on the back nine, before suffering a double bogey on the seventh hole.

“Overall, I think it was a pretty solid round. There were strokes out there to be dropped,” Fultz said. “… I hit a lot of greens in regulation. I hit my iron straight and that was a big thing I was going for.”

Desai said he had two bad holes that proved costly. He said he had a triple bogey and a double bogey, but finished his round strong.

“I was one under the last three holes,” Desai said. “That was probably the best part of my round because I persevered. With a couple bad holes I shot an 80, so I think I can get it lower.”

Dotson said he was pleased with his round, and he said staying calm on the course really helped him.

“I saved myself a lot of times today, just by relaxing, remaining calm, going with the flow of things,” Dotson said. “I tried not to get too worked about one bad hole or one bad shot. Just take it shot by shot at a time and don’t worry about my score just focus on the fundamentals. I needed to hit the ball well. That’s what I did and it worked out pretty well.”

The Generals shot a 367 as a team on Friday in another Shenandoah District mini-tournament at Heritage Oaks Golf Course in Harrisonburg. They finished third in that tourney as well.

Fultz said he was happy with how the team bounced back on Monday.

“I think we probably had first match jitters,” Fultz said. “It was a relatively easy course. We just didn’t play well. I guess over the weekend we worked out our problems, and came here on the home course and played well.”

Wilson Memorial’s John Garvey and East Rockingham’s Alex Czerwinski each shot a 76 on the par 71 course to earn medalists honors.

Stonewall Jackson coach Steve Burkholder replaced Roger Wilkins as coach this year, and said he’s enjoying it so far.

“We have a really good group of kids this year,” Burkholder said. “We have a lot of returners. They’re really, really good kids. They’re easy to get along with.”

The Generals are off to a solid start to the season, and the young squad with only one senior is confident about what they can achieve.

“I feel really good about this season,” Desai said. “I think we can go the distance this year.”

Contact staff writer Tommy Keeler at 540-465-5137 ext. 168, or tkeeler@nvdaily.com