BY ANDY ROWER | MIRROR SPORTS — Maumee graduated four of its top golfers off last year’s team but still returns five more for Jake Tapley’s second season as the Panthers coach.
Leading these returners is a trio of seasoned seniors in Quinn Deitering, Evan McConaughey and Hadyn Schroeder.
“Losing four was kind of tough, but we’ve got three seniors that have all been playing since their freshman year, so they are our veteran group,” Tapley said. “I definitely expect all three of them to kind of lead the way.”
A prolific putter, Deitering posted last year’s fourth lowest 9-hole average of 48.4 and the team’s fifth best 18-hole mark of 101.8.
A consistent driver, McConaughey followed up with a 52 and a 108.8; and Schroeder – a long ball hitter – added a 54.8 and a 126 at the varsity level.
“I’m definitely looking for them to shoot some low scores – lower than they have in the past,” Tapley said. “They know we had that senior crew last year and they have to pick up the slack this year.”
Also back is a pair of juniors in Jackson Albright and Michael Stamm.
“They’ve also been out all summer working and they both really improved in a lot of ways,” Tapley said.
While Maumee’s official tryouts had not yet taken place at the time of The Mirror’s interview with Tapley, 2018’s newcomers are expected to include two freshmen in Andrew Bick and Jacob Buck.
“Andrew has been playing since he was a little kid and has got golf experience, so we’re looking for him to step up,” Tapley said. “Jacob voluntarily came out last year as an eighth-grader, hung out with us at practices and was making progress.”
The Panthers will open the season at Heather Downs Country Club on Saturday, August 4, when they will compete in the Knight Invitational at 1:30 p.m.
“First and foremost with any team I’ve got, we’re going to go out there and have fun,” Tapley said. “Enjoying the game is the most important part. If we go out and shoot a really low team score, that’s great. If we win a bunch of matches, that’s really great, too. That would be a cherry on top for me.”