Panthers, Scorps earn final team legs for state

Karl Schneider

FARMINGTON — The Piedra Vista and Farmington boys golf teams earned their third and final legs to qualify for the state golf tournaments during the PV Invitational on Monday at Piñon Hills Golf Course.

Piedra Vista's Tyler Diehl tees off during the PV Invitational on Monday at Piñon Hills Golf Course in Farmington.

The two teams are the first to qualify in their respective classes, PV in 6A and Farmington in 5A.

The Panthers posted the low team score of the tourney with a 325. The Scorps finished with 331.

“It’s extremely important,” PV boy coach Tom Yost said. “Getting that final leg before we head into the break is going to allow us to work on our lifting program and get everyone into some sort of practice program over the winter months so we can gear toward May instead of worrying about getting another leg for state.”

PV’s Tyler Diehl took medalist honors for the boys with a 1-over-par 73.

Trey Diehl, Tyler’s twin brother, tied Farmington’s Zach Holesinger and Raton’s Jason Parker for second place with scores of 78.

PV’s River Smalley and Farmington’s Danny Carpenter picked up their third legs as individuals with rounds of 80 and 82, respectively.

No girls teams earn qualifying legs at the tournament.

Kirtland Central's Tiger Tsosie putts during the PV Invitational on Monday at Piñon Hills Golf Course in Farmington.

Mesilla Valley’s Coco Andersson earned medalist honors with a 5-over 77.

St. Michael’s Carisa Padilla placed second with an 84, and PV’s Sydney Schumacher finished third with an 89. Aztec’s Linda Peralta and Farmington’s Meghan Graff rounded out the top five with scores of 92 and 96.

Schumacher, Peralta and Graff had previously qualified for state as individuals.

Aztec's Linda Peralta tees off during the PV Invitational on Monday at Piñon Hills Golf Course in Farmington.

The tournament marked the final week of the fall golf schedule. Teams will now have the winter months off to prepare for the spring season and the state tournaments in May. The 6A state tourney will be held at Spring River Golf Course in Roswell. The 5A tourney will be at The Canyon Club in Albuquerque, and the A/4A tournament will be held at Piñon Hills.

With the Panthers and Scorps qualified for the team portion of their state tourneys, the two teams can now focus on getting individuals to a playing level that will help the teams challenge for a top-three finish at state.

Part of getting the teams ready will be their off-season programs from now until spring golf resumes in March.

“It doesn’t make sense to me that we have split seasons in golf. I have two or three players playing well right now, but two or three who we need to get better. It’s kind of a blessing and a curse, and when we come back in March, who knows how the boys will be playing,” Yost said. “We’re going to work on some flexibility, mobility and balance, and hopefully, they’ll take the initiative to keep playing in the winter, weather permitting, and come back strong in March.”

Karl Schneider is the sports editor for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4648.