Nathan Cogswell and Mason Koch played a few practice rounds at the Meridian Valley Country Club in Kent ahead of last week’s Washington Open.
The dried-out greens there turned out to be so similar to what the pair of Kentwood High School boys golfers would see Tuesday at Meadow Springs Country Club in Richland for the first round of the 4A state tournament.
Cogswell, a sophomore, shot 1-under-par 71, ending the first round one stroke behind Eastlake’s Tommy McCoy for the top spot entering the second and final round to be played Saturday.
His teammate, Koch, a George Fox signee who is in his fourth trip to the 4A state tournament, shot even-par 72 and is tied for fourth place.
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“They’re both so composed,” Kentwood coach Mike Landry said. “Talking to the other coaches, you literally cannot tell by their demeanor whether they are a couple over par or under par.
“It’s exactly what you want. It shows the experience they have.”
Cogswell went from 1-over to 1-under on 14 when he holed out from 70 yards for eagle.
And Koch banked back-to-back birdies on the third and fourth holes. He’s in the same spot he was last year at two strokes off the lead.
Those two are in the top four, and it could still be tough for the Conks to contend for a team title. Not with defending team champion Bellarmine Prep sending four golfers into the second round — Joe Highsmith (74), RJ Manke (74), Joe Lyon (75) and Collin Bordeaux (79) — and Eastlake having three golfers who shot 75 or better.
Over at the 4A state girls tournament at Sun Willows Golf Course in Pasco, Kentwood’s Katelann Soth shot two-over-par 74 and sits in seventh place — five strokes back of Pasco’s Jalayne Martinez, a Boise State University signee.
The Bellarmine Prep girls golf team did what it has grown accustomed to the past six years. All six of its golfers made it through to the second round to all but clinch the Lions of a state record seventh consecutive state title.
Clair Hill led the way for the Lions at 4-over 76. Morgan Bentley, Tessa George and Molly O’Brien are tied for 13th at 5-over 77, which was one stroke ahead of Kentwood’s Jocelyn Dacuag.
Bellarmine’s Maddy Kokich is at 8-over 80 and Serena Lee shot 9-over 81 — the same as Bethel’s Emma Johnson.
The Lions have nine 4A state titles in school history. No other school has more than three (Ferris and Mead).