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Young Trojan golfers putting down solid roots for a winning future

Don’t you worry about the Worthington High School golf teams. Though both the girls and the boys squads are young, both head coaches are confident the future is bright.

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Lilly Mahlberg of the Worthington Trojans girls golf team follows through on a tee shot Friday afternoon. (Tim Middagh/The Globe)

WORTHINGTON -- Don’t you worry about the Worthington High School golf teams. Though both the girls and the boys squads are young, both head coaches are confident the future is bright.

The WHS girls are led by four sophomores, four juniors and one freshman, and the varsity boys team consists of two freshmen and two sophomores in its entirety. But the signs are positive.

“They just come with such good attitudes. They want to be here, for sure,” said girls head coach Brooke Hermsen Friday afternoon on a beautiful 70-degree sunny day at the Worthington course. “If they keep putting the time in like they are now … the future’s looking good.”

Boys head coach Paul Barduson explains about his small group, “They play every night after practice. You can’t coach that. They love golf.”

On Friday, the Trojan girls defeated Marshall 204 to 216 as freshman Madison Beckmann carded a medalist’s round of 46 strokes. It was Beckmann’s first meet in three weeks after being in quarantine.

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Kendall Nixon and Ellie Weg both had 52 for Worthington. Teammates Lilly Mahlberg and Mia Nixon both had 54, and Tarren Spartz shot 58.

Brooklyn Gossen led Marshall with 49.

On the boys’ side, Trojans Tyler Jaycox scored a 41, Andrew Mulder a 42, Logan Powers a 45 and Cody Vorasane a 53.

Jayden Manthei of Marshall was medalist with a 39 as the Tigers won the boys team competition 167-181.

Hermsen alternately serves as teacher and encourager for her youthful team, but there have already been many individual successes. In Worthington’s previous meet against Luverne on Thursday, Mahlberg was the medalist. Since shooting over a hundred in the first meet of the season, which Hermsen described as “just one of those days,” the sophomore has been averaging in the high 40s.

“She can get off the tee pretty well. And when she can get off the tee, she can usually hit a good second shot,” Hermsen said.

Nowadays, Hermsen is quite pleased with all her players’ performances. Several of them are natural athletes, especially Spartz and Weg, who are coming off a winning basketball season.

About the only issue that Barduson seems to have these days is depth.

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“You’ve gotta count all four every time. It puts pressure on them,” he says about his boys. “It’s great that we have a young group. And they’re going to gain a lot of experience. There’s a lot of promise for the future.”

Barduson adds that, as a coach, “You get to know the kids really well and get to see a lot of their shots, ‘cuz it’s a really condensed group.”

It’s also been a very busy group. Besides events on Thursday and Friday, the Trojans also compete today (Saturday) at an invitational in Fairmont. They return to action on Monday in a Big South Conference meet, with the girls staying home in Worthington and the boys traveling to Pipestone.

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Worthington Trojans Andrew Mulder celebrates a birdy on the hole 3 during a match against Marshal Tigers Evan Franson and Grant Horvath Friday afternoon 04 30 21. (Tim Middagh/The Globe)

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