Warriors unite: 2 districts join forces for golf
Marion and Peabody/Burns golfers are joining forces for the first time ever to compete together during this year’s golf season.
Jim Pohlman, who has 60 years of golfing experience and has coached Peabody-Burns for the last 11 years, will coach the combined team.
“The team will be competing as the ‘Warriors’ since both schools have the same mascot and a common color,” Pohlman said. “Royal blue will be their colors in competition.”
Since so many of his golfers have never golfed before, Pohlman plans to focus on building the team’s basic understanding of the game as well as work at developing fundamental chipping and putting skills before he works his way up the irons and teaches proper driver techniques.
He said some of the younger players have asked him how to hit a “Happy Gilmore shot,” to which he replies, “no, no, no,” and tries to impress upon them the fact that big drives are not the key to golf. He tells golfers 70-percent of the shots they will be making should be from within 100 yards of the hole.
Pohlman said he also has been encouraging golfers to play together outside of practice because there is only so much he can teach them.
“Some of the beginners are showing a real possibility of becoming very good players and most of the upper classmen will need to step up and be leaders,” he said. “Marion senior Jared Hague has the most experience. He is a very good possibility for a state bound player in May.”
With 13 golfers, eight golfers are from Marion and are five from Peabody-Burns. Between both schools, Hague is the only returning letterman.
However, Pohlman said Marion senior Lauren McLinden and Marion sophomore Jade Corona, as well as Peabody-Burns junior Brent Buller also have competitive experience.
The remainder of the team is made up of Marion golfers Jason Brewer, Austin Molleker, Jarrett Johnson, Ezra Darnall, and William Holt; and Peabody-Burns golfers Kaden Gibson, Ian Orrock, Jayton Scott, and Dylon Ehrlich.
The combined team will be practice and have tournaments at Marion Country Club while the team will follow Peabody-Burns golfing schedule until regional and state competition when each will compete at their appropriate classification; Marion at 3A and Peabody-Burns at 2A.
Until then, Pohlman said the varsity squad would be determined in practice by the players. He plans to have golfers compete each week for the top six positions. The golfers with the best scores during practice will compete on varsity regardless of if they were varsity the week before.
“The combined team is a win-win situation,” Pohlman said. “Both schools were struggling to find a full squad. Now I’ve got a full varsity and a full JV team.”
The teams’ first golf meet will be on April 8 in Herington.