The Barnum golf team has had a busy stretch at the end of their season due to the long winter, but the team is looking strong heading into their sectional matches.
Barnum had two boys and two girls earn all-conference honors this year. Representing Barnum girls golf was junior Kira DeCaigny along with sophomore Madi Koeche at the conference golf match held at Izatys Resort in Onamia. On the boys side it was a pair of seniors, Layne Wickstrom and Ryan Manahan. Wickstrom was named all-conference for the third year in a row and Manahan was this year’s Great Rivers Conference champion. This is the first time in school history that a Bomber was named the GRC champion.
Manahan spoke of his success and his years as a member of the Barnum golf team. “I’ve played a lot of golf, and I play a lot in the summer, while some players just play in season,” the senior said. “I really like the team we have in Barnum, and it has been great playing with my fellow seniors over the years. In stressful matches when I need to play well, it is nice to be with my teammates who I can just have fun with.” Manahan is ranked the 28th individual golfer in the state heading into sections.
Next up for Barnum golf are their section matches. The boys team competes in Section 7A, and the girls team is in Section 7AA. With the return of junior Cobe Kirk, coach Brent Donaldson is excited about the boys being able to compete at full strength. “We are looking forward to having a whole, healthy team,” said Donaldson. “We are aiming to compete for the top three spots. Walker is really good. But if the boys can put four scores together, they have a chance at some ribbons.”
In golf, the top team from each section goes to the state tournament, along with the next five top scorers who were not on the winning team. Donaldson feels as though Barnum has a chance to send at least one if not more golfers to the state tournament.
On the girls side, Donaldson noted the difficulties involved with a school of Barnum’s size competing up a class in AA. But he is excited that Barnum girls golf will be represented at the sectional match this season, as that was not the case a year ago. “Our girls will gain invaluable experience by attending the AA match this year,” he said.
The Barnum golf program has four seniors this season, all on the boys side. They are the aforementioned Manahan and Wickstrom, along with Brady Coughlin and Hudson Kasberg. Donaldson spoke very highly of this group of seniors, and not just about their golf skills. “It is always a pleasure to have these kids come in as underclassmen and be able to coach them through the program, and see them become exceptional young men,” said Donaldson. “I am very proud of these seniors and who they are as young adults. They mean an awful lot to me.”
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