MHS golfers to begin practice Thursday

Since Marietta High’s golf team has been a member of the East Central Ohio League, it has known nothing but championships.

Three straight to be exact.

Not too shabby.

Is a fourth ECOL crown on the horizon this upcoming fall?

Could be.

At Marietta Country Club at 9 a.m. Thursday, the Marietta High golfers are scheduled to officially begin their first practice of the 2013 campaign. The Tigers’ opening match of the season is slated for Aug. 8 at Turnberry Golf Course in Pickerington.

MHS graduated a couple of good ones in ECOL Player of the Year Jared Hammons and all-league performer Joe Broughton, but the Tiger golf cupboard is far from bare.

“We have a good core of kids coming back, who are ready to play golf,” said MHS second-year boss John Doughty, also the 2012 ECOL Golf Coach of the Year. “Right now, I know pretty much who my first six golfers will be.”

Marietta High’s No. 1 or 2 golfer is expected to be senior Nathan Matheny, an all-league honoree last season. In the 2012 ECOL meet at River Greens Golf Course in West Lafayette, he carded rounds of 84 and 83.

Jeffery Hensler was an all-league golfer as a Tiger freshman, shooting an 85 and 81. Last Friday, he carded a 74 to win the 15-16 year-old division of the Tiger Paws Classic golf fundraiser at MCC.

Next on the MHS roster will probably be junior Garrett Bertram, who was runner-up to Hensler at Tiger Paws with a round of 81.

No. 4 in the order could be junior Nick Thieman, and battling it out for the fifth and sixth spots will probably be twins’ Max Fitzgerald and Matthew Fitzgerald, who shot 97 and 96, respectively, at Tiger Paws.

Also in the mix will be senior Austyn McVicker.

Marietta High’s first home golf match at MCC is slated for Aug. 21.

“We’re going to be doing a lot of traveling early in the season so that we can get to play 18 holes on a regular basis,” Doughty said.

Doughty’s assistant and JV coach will be J.D. Secrest. The Marietta Middle School golf coach will be Bryan Wittekind.