Aspen golf wins 3A team title in Steamboat |

Aspen golf wins 3A team title in Steamboat

Jon MaletzThe Aspen TimesAspen, CO Colorado

Aspen's Jesse Beetham fires a shot toward the No. 18 green at the Haymaker Golf course Wednesday afternoon during the Steamboat Sailors Invitational.

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS – The Aspen golf team is hoping Wednesday’s effort is a sign of things to come.Jesse Beetham fired a 5-over par round of 77 and teammates Ryan Smith and Coulter Young carded 78 and 80, respectively, for the Skiers, who ran away with the 3A team title at Steamboat Springs’ Haymaker Golf Course – site of Sept. 22’s regional tournament. They came within one stroke of tying Battle Mountain, Montrose and Steamboat for the overall title in a field of 21 3A, 4A and 5A schools. “The guys played real well. A lot of them started out real strong, then toward the end made a few mental errors, but all in all it was pretty good,” Aspen assistant coach Brian Dalla Betta said. “I’m proud of the guys. I think they’re all generally pleased, and feel like they could’ve played better.”Steamboat’s Kaelen Gunderson fired a 71 to win medalist honors. Battle Mountain beat out Steamboat and Montrose on the first playoff hole to clinch the overall title with a score of 234. Basalt (261) finished second to Aspen among 3As.Beetham might have come close to clinching a third win this season had it not been for two major gaffes. The freshman recorded a triple bogey in the middle of the round – he was 2-under at the time – and four-putted his final hole.Young was even through nine but also struggled down the stretch. Longhorns No. 1 Marty Knous’ day had a much less auspicious start.The senior, who finished with 78, recorded consecutive triple bogeys and a double on his first three holes. Knous’ drive split the fairway at the second, but his approach sailed over the green and into the water, Basalt head coach Steve Knous said. At his third, a par 3, Marty Knous found the water off the tee.”We were talking about it, and I told him to hit a little extra club. He was confident he had the right club picked out and, of course, he went in the water,” Steve Knous said.”I don’t know how to explain it, if he wasn’t awake yet or what.”Marty Knous regrouped in dramatic fashion, however, playing the next 15 holes in 2-under. The stretch included a tap-in eagle, multiple birdies and many missed short putts. “I think he surprised himself by playing that strongly for the remainder of the round, because it’s so easy to get down on yourself and just not come back,” Steve Knous said. “You know, he’s got some fight in him. “I’m proud of how he hung in there and fought back for a respectable score.”Patrick Hall carded 84 and Luke Newberry 99 for Basalt, which finished three strokes ahead of Gunnison (264) in the 3A field. The Longhorns and Skiers tee off this morning at Yampa Valley Golf Course in Craig.

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