With an experienced team and a new league, a Heart of America League championship isn’t out of the question for the Marion High School Warriors golf team.
“We start every year with a simple goal: to enjoy the great game of golf and work hard to improve every day,” co-head coach Tod Gordon said. “The second goal will be to win the league title in the new HOA League.
Marion Country Club will be the site of the regional golf meet, and Gordon hopes the team enters the meet with the expectation of qualifying as a team for state. The team qualified for state in 2007, 2008, and 2009. In 2010, the Warriors missed qualifying for state by one stroke. Lindsay Hett and Landon Leiker qualified individually.
Seniors Tim Costello, Leiker, and Adam Molleker, and sophomores Hogan Lovelady and Wiley Lundy are the team’s returning letter-winners. Hett is the only letter-winner the Warriors lost to graduation.
Andrew Kjellin, Brandon Meierhoff, Dane Purkeypile, Braydon Putter, Derek Stuchlik, and Jared Vondenkamp will challenge for a varsity spot, Gordon said. There are a total of 28 golfers on the team.
“Consistency from week to week will be important,” Gordon said. “This is a very talented group of golfers, and each week should be exciting with the steady improvement.”
Leiker has a chance to be the first golfer in school history to qualify individually for state all four years in high school, Gordon said.
“With his experience, another goal would be to place in the top 20,” he said. “State is held at Salina, and Landon is very familiar with this course and on the right day might even be good enough to win it. Landon should have a great senior season.”
The Warriors’ first meet is April 5 at Herington.
Gordon and Lee Leiker share coaching duties.