EVANSTON — Evanston High School golf head coach Jerry Carroll shared a couple of beliefs last spring about this fall’s golf season.
His girls’ team would be young, and therefore lean, in terms of talent to contend for a conference crown or state title, due to losses to graduation and a few of his female golfers opting to compete in other fall season sports at EHS.
Carroll believed if his boys’ team put in the off-season time and effort, with everyone returning, they could be in the state championship conversation.
Three freshman girls came out for golf this fall to gain invaluable experience for the future. Aryana Little, Kesley Hunting and JaLynn Reichenberg joined forces with two-time returning all-state selection and senior Kyra Sponenburgh this fall. Carroll has previously stated that Sponenburgh has the talent and wherewithal to win a state title, as an individual medalist.
Last week in the Gem City, Sponenburgh placed first individually versus the competition from the three Cheyenne schools and Laramie, with a 166 score for the 18-hole tourney. This week, at the Class 4A state tournament to be played at Cheyenne’s par 70 Airport Golf Course, the Evanston senior will have to contend with not only the same competition from last week, but also the best the state has to offer from schools such as Kelly Walsh, Natrona County and the rest of the 4A division’s best golfers in her quest to garner individual medalist honors. Her coach believes she is “absolutely capable.”
“Kyra’s a solid kid. She really analyzes and thinks about her game and reads her greens well. She definitely has what it takes to become an individual medalist,” Carroll affirmed.
As far as his guys’ team is concerned, they have been solid all season. Carroll was pleased with the work put in by his boys’ team in the summer off-season.
Evanston placed first in the first three or four tournaments in which they competed, including Pinedale, Star Valley and their own Evanston Invitational.
In early September, the team placed third in a tournament hosted by Rock Springs, behind Cheyenne East and 3A Lander Valley.
Last week, Evanston was the runner-up at Laramie. The Laramie tournament included the three Cheyenne schools, Laramie and Gillette.
“Obviously, we’d like to win the state championship,” senior Braxton Lind told the Herald.
“I think we have a really good shot and the course kind of sets up well for us,” Lind added.
Senior Brady Hurd shares his golf and basketball teammate’s belief.
“If we play like we’re capable of playing, we can win it, without a doubt,” Hurd said.
Red Devil golf has won state golf titles in 1977, 1998 and most recently in 2009.
Lady Red Devil golf, while not in contention this year, previously won it all in 1988 and 2014.
Check the Herald next week for results from this year’s state tournament.