The Mt. Blue golf team has an 0-7 record so far this season. But the year has already been considered a success for the Cougars.

A year ago, Mt. Blue was forced to play a junior varsity schedule due to low numbers. This season, the Cougars boast a roster of 18 golfers, making the future of the program look bright.

“The kids are all pretty fresh to golf, they’re pretty new,” Mt. Blue coach Mark Cyr said. “I’d say half my team has played basically a year (of golf), the other half picked up their first clubs this summer.”

Cyr is happy to have new golfers on the roster, as it gives him a chance to mold their games on the course.

”Some are young, which is OK,” Cyr said. “Some are freshmen, a couple are sophomores. If they’re new to golf, at that age, we can work with them. Maybe in a year or two, we can turn our record around.”

Cyr pointed out seniors Evan Stone and Gabe Robinson as being two of Mt. Blue’s standouts this season.

“(Stone) spent a week up at Sugarloaf during the summer at a golf camp,” Cyr said. “That helped him out quite a bit, he’s put up some good numbers…(Robinson’s) game has improved tremendously from last year. He’s been more consistent, he’s really hitting the ball a lot straighter this year.”

 

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Jim Kerschner knew his Messalonskee golf team had several talented veterans returning this season. But the Eagles may be set for the future, as well.

Messalonskee has three sophomores — Sam Seekins, Mitchell Grant and James Smith — who have produced early this season. All three picked up wins for the Eagles in their 8.5-0.5 victory over Skowhegan in the season opener Aug. 28.

“Sam Seekins has probably improved the most of any of my (sophomores),” Kerschner said. “He’s played a great deal of golf. James is playing very well right now, doing a great job. Mitchell is just now getting into preseason shape. He didn’t play a lot of golf in the summer, but he’s finally coming around.”

Kerschner added that newcomer and fellow sophomore Jude Lilly has been a solid contributor as well, and credits their love of the game as a reason for success.

“Several of them work at the golf course, I think that really helps,” Kerschner said. “They really love (the game). They play a lot, they do a lot. It’s just a question of maintaining their growth.”

 

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As is the case with any sports season in Maine, weather tends to play a factor in scheduling.

But especially in golf, the back end of the schedule can get backed up quickly.

Due to rainouts, teams have been scrambling to reschedule countable matches. For some teams, it leaves a particularly brutal pace.

Messalonskee is one of the schools that had a rough road over the past week.

“We have, I think, eight out of the next countable days to play matches,” Kerschner said.

Mt. Blue is another program that — like Messalonskee — is playing catch-up on the schedule.

”Between last week and this week, I think we have seven matches in eight days,” Coach Cyr said.

Cyr said the stretch makes it difficult as a coach to help make suggestions and improve play for his golfers.

”You just can’t talk to a kid while they’re playing,” Cyr said. “During a practice, you can give immediate feedback when a kid hits the ball. You can’t do that in a match.”


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