SPRING PREVIEW: Minneota Viking golf

Photo by Sam Thiel Pictured above is the Minneota boys golf team. Front Row (L to R): Michael Pitzl, Max Rost, Gavin Welsh and Cole Mhyre. Back Row (L to R): Braxton Downing, Joey Rybinski, Chase Differding, Zach VanKeulen, Mitchell Rost and Nolan Boerboom.

MINNEOTA – The Minneota boys and girls golf team are ready to hit the links after another successful season, and this year, will have some new faces leading the way at coach.

Walker Hennen and Nicole Evers take on the head coaching duties after serving as assistant coaches last season. Long-time Vikings coach Greg Gile will still be involved with the team as a volunteer coach.

Hennen said the experience from last season, along with having the experience of Gile by their side will be beneficial for both of them as they head into their new roles.

“We had a little bit of experience last year being assistant coaches, so that kind of helped,” Hennen said. “With Gile being here as a volunteer coach this year, it makes a big difference because of the program that he had started and we’re building off of there.”

Girls golf

The girls golf team will be relying on their youth this spring, with junior Natalie Bot and a pair of freshmen in Lauren Bowyer and Jeren Rost leading the way.

Evers said they’ll look to their returning players to anchor the top spots in the lineup, with a mix of youth players to help round it out.

“We have three returning so it’ll be good to have those players in the top spots to lead the team and then we have some younger girls who will fill in and build as the year goes on,” Evers said.

Boys golf

On the boys side, the Vikings will have a strong core of returning experience, led by Nolan Boerboom and Mitchell Rost. Hennen said they will rely on the veteran leadership of those two players and set an example for their team.

“Nolan has some experience at the higher level, he went to state the last two years. Mitchell is returning with quite a bit of experience as well,” Hennen said. “Just from a leadership spot, I think that’s going to make a big difference.

Hennen added in the first few weeks of the season, they were fortunate to be able to practice outside on the course and gain some experience at the range and on the putting green.

“We actually got an opportunity to go outside for about two weeks, so we got to hit on the range and had an opportunity to chip and putt on some actual greens,” Hennen said. “Other than that we’ve been inside just working on our short game.”

But like most teams, Hennen said they’re looking forward to being outside and competing.

“Just being able to hit an actual ball to an actual green and putt and for the weather to be nicer,” Hennen said.