TIM SMITH/BRANDON SUN
Steven Young has won three straight titles.
WASAGAMING — Steven Young may not have had a record-setting round Saturday at the 80th annual Tamarack golf tournament, but he did enter the event’s record books.
The LaSalle native became the first junior boys’ golfer to win three straight Tamarack titles as he beat Brandonite Colton Willms 3 and 2.
Josh Wytinck, Dave Scinocca and Chris Craddock all won two Tamaracks in a row as juniors, but none could get three until Young.
"It feels great," Young said. "I’ve worked hard for this. This is my signature tournament every year. I want to come out, win and have fun. It was a big goal for me and I accomplished it.
"I basically started when I was 13 and got to play with a bunch of very skilled players then. That really helped me with my development and allowed me to play well and win this championship."
The aura around Young didn’t seem to bother Willms early in the round. He won three straight holes to go 2 up after six before dropping five of his next six holes, and the 17-year-old Brandonite couldn’t come back. The match was virtually sealed when Young made 20-foot downhill putt on 14 to halve the hole.
Despite the loss, Willms, who took up golf two years ago after being forced to quit hockey due to a heart condition, believes he has grown a lot on the course in the last year.
"It’s obviously a huge step from last year," he said. "Last year, I was the bottom of the second flight. It’s great to get up here and play with the champion. Win or lose, I had fun out there. I’ll take it as a learning experience into next year."
Next year, Young will be going for his fourth and final junior title before he moves up to the men’s ranks.
Meanwhile, the senior men’s championship was a one-sided affair. Selkirk’s Mark Starodub won the first five holes and was 7 up after nine when his opponent, Bob Desroches, decided to shake hands.
Starodub — who was on the wait list for the men’s division and waited on the tee boxes all Saturday and half of Sunday for an opening before entering the seniors event —was glad to get his first Tamarack title, but wished it could have come in a different way.
"I played really well, but you’d rather see two people play well or two people play bad and be close," he said. "I’d rather lose close than win when somebody’s not playing good. But, oh well. It’s a win."
CLARIFICATION: Cole Temple shot a 126 in the 7 and under Cubs division at the Tamarack at Elkhorn Ranch.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition August 26, 2013