Viking boys golf team wins tourney in Salem

The Siuslaw Vikings, champions of the 2023 Creekside Golf Club Invitational, from left: Jacob Welton, Wyatt Wells, Braxton Hulet, Camden Linton, Will Johnson and Ryan Klampe. Photo courtesy Ron Klampe

SHS girls team takes third at Siuslaw Invite

March 21, 2023 — Viking golfers are back on the links. The season, just the second for the Siuslaw golf program after a multi-year hiatus, is young but both teams are already finding success, especially the boys team who won the first Siuslaw golf team tournament championship in many years after bringing home the first place trophy at a tournament in Salem.

On March 20 Siuslaw coach Chuck Johnson took his boys team to our state capital city to join seven other teams for the Creekside Golf Club Invitational. To say they did well would be an understatement.

Top Vik golfer for the day was sophomore Ryan Klampe. Two birdies helped him score a 6-over par 42 on the front nine. Then Klampe, the sixth-place medalists from last year’s state tournament, got even better. He had two more birdies and an even more impressive score on the back nine of 1-over par 37.

Klampe’s total of 79 was good for second place. Sophomore Blake Knurowski of East Linn Christian Academy beat him by one stroke to win the individual title with his score of 78.

Next low score for Siuslaw was freshman Will Johnson with an impressive score of 90 in just his second ever high school golf tournament. Johnson scored 48 on the front nine and improved on the back nine with a score of 42. His score earned him a third place medal.

The other four Viks that got on the links also played well. Freshman Camden Linton scored a 101. Junior Braxton Hulet scored 105. Two seniors were next in the Viking rankings  — Jacob Welton (111) and Wyatt Wells (113).

Klampe, Johnson, Hulet and Welton’s scores were combined for the team total - 385. That was enough to give Siuslaw first place in the team standings, an impressive 33 strokes better than second place La Pine (418). East Linn Christian Academy was third with 436.

Coach Johnson was very impressed by the success his team is having this early in the process of rebuilding the Siuslaw golf program.

I am very pleased with our performance; especially since this is just the start of just our second year back,” said Johnson after the tournament.

The week before, both Siuslaw golf teams opened their seasons with a home event, the 1st annual Siuslaw Invitational.

The girls event was first, on March 14. Johnson was happy with how the team performed while shorthanded.

“What I was really proud of is we went into the tournament with only one girl with experience because [of their experienced players from last year] two were at volleyball and one was sick,” said Johnson. “We got some experience real quick though and I thought the girls did really well.”

Johnson pointed out how difficult it must have been for the girls team at this tournament as many were part of an actual competition for the first time in their lives.

“Just two weeks after you start to be in an 18-hole tournament is tough,” said Johnson. “I’m just pleased the girls had fun. Probably the best thing that happened is the girls couldn’t wait to get to practicing the next day fast enough.”

Senior Faith Lumadue was low girl for the Viks with an 18-hole score of 131. Next was another senior, Gabi Jarman, who shot a 134. Freshman Emily Gortz shot 139. Junior Jenna Young 140 and senior Baily Myrick shot 144.

The top four Siuslaw golfers combined to score 544, good enough for third in the team standings. Sheldon won the 1st annual Siuslaw Invitational with a score of 437. North Bend was second with 500.

Freshman Vishaka Pryan from Catlin Gable won the event with a remarkable score of 76 for 18-holes. She was 21 strokes ahead of the runners-up, Maddi Holmes and Ashlyn Thomey, both of Marist.

Johnson talked about what he expects from the girls team moving forward and mentions he expects sophomores Rhianna Lane and Darcy Edmond, who both have experience on last year’s squad, to be big contributors this season once they can get on the links but there are also others.

“We have a handful of girls working really hard that could sneak into that varsity lineup at any time,” the coach said.

Two days later the boys' version of the 1st annual Siuslaw Invitational occurred.

Klampe was the leader for the Viks for that event also with a 18-hole score of 80, good enough for eighth place. Will Johnson shot an impressive 88 in his first high school tournament. Rounding out the Viking scoring was Welton with 104, Hulet with 106 and Wells with 124.

Winner was Colby Sullivan of McNary. The senior posted a very low score of 3-under par 69.

385 was the Viks team score, good enough for sixth place. Sheldon won the event with a score of 317.

Coach Johnson was happy about his team’s start of the season.

“I believe last year our best team score was 450 and that’s with Ryan [Klampe] shooting in the 70s,” said Coach Johnson. “In this tournament, with twelve full teams and 14 schools represented, we finished 7th with a score of 385. That’s over 65 strokes better than we ever did last year. That was really exciting and hopefully we will just get better.”

The girls golf team will get a chance to get better on Wednesday when they travel to Bandon for a tournament at Bandon Crossings. 

Next up for both teams is the Harrisburg Diamond Woods Golf Tournament on April 3. First tee-time is 9 a.m.