Justin Kirchner sets up for a shot at the home divisional meet.

Justin Kirchner sets up for a shot at the home divisional meet.

The White Pine High School golf team finished second in a home division meet on May 14, qualifying the team to compete in the State Championship in Pahrump on Wednesday. Ty Pickel set a new competitive record low score on the home course with a 65. According to coach Randy Long, it’s the lowest score that been shot on the course since it expanded to 18 holes.

Pickel’s record-setting performance also earned him the top individual spot in the meet, followed by Chris Young, who shot an even par 72. The Bobcat golf team finished the meet with a cumulative 411. Needles placed first with a 398.

“As a coach it was really rewarding to see everyone shoot so well,” Long said.

Rounding out the individual scores on the team were Nick Johnson and Tyler Kane, both with an 87, Justin Kirchner with a 100 and Seth Robertson with a 101.

“They are all really starting to gel as a team,” the coach said.

As a senior, the meet served as the last time Pickel will play on the course competitively, and the record low score cements his legacy in Ely golf. Long said that it is bittersweet to have to say goodbye after this season to one of his best players.

“I’ve been coaching Pickel since he was a little kid. I would call him a ‘watch me’ kid because every time he was about to take a swing, he would say ‘watch me!’” Long said. “He definitely has the skills to play at the next level so I’m excited to see him move on.”

As he watches Pickel for the last time though, Long looks forward to the future of the team. With multiple freshmen starting over the course of the season, and even more just barely missing the cut, Long said he looks forward to watching as they all learn the game and lower their scores over the coming seasons.

So long as they stick with it.

“We have a lot of young guys coming back next year. I know that some of them are going to get summer jobs but I hope they still find time to compete,” he said. “It is going to be a competitive team and each guys knows they are going to have to earn their spot to start.”

As for the State Championship meet, the coach said that he and his squad are “looking forward” to playing against the best teams in the state and hope to come back with the title.