Westside Boys Golf Prepare for the State Tournament


Jacob Hellman looks to putt in at the Lincoln Southwest. Hellman would later win the invite with a 70 and help the team win with a combined 304. Photo by Mary Nilius

On Tuesday, May 25th and Wednesday, May 26th the Warriors boys golf team will head out to Norfolk to compete in the NSAA State Tournament. After coming off a district championship through a sixth-place finish from Kolby Brown the Warrior boys golf team looks to place highly as they will finish up their last tournament when they head off to Norfolk for the state tournament. Sophomore Porter Topp who shot a 75 in the district championship while placing tenth is ready for the challenge of the tough course in Norfolk. 

“I’ve been playing well in the last few tournaments and that’s what you need if you want to do well at Norfolk,” Topp said. “It is a tight course and it can be very threatening to people off the tee. I played well there just a few weeks ago so that really helps because this is my first time at state.” 

Throughout the season, thousands of repetitions have the team as comfortable as they can be headed into the tournament. For Topp, it’s all about making sure the small things are fit to precision.

“We have worked on our wedges and chipping which is where we have struggled,” Topp said. “We also went to the range and played to get our long game and total game together. Our team has looked at Norfolk’s layout and talked about how to play it.

Mental preparation is just as important as getting swing after swing in practice every day. For Topp and the team, they hope to keep the pressure to a minimum.

“I have been working on my own game outside of the team to really focus on what I’m struggling with to further help the team,” Topp said. 

Junior Connor Radde believes the key to performing under pressure is to trust yourself and what you have done leading up to the big day. 

“Staying confident and trusting your abilities is the key,” Radde said. I try not to overthink things and stress about it being the state tournament. But at the same time, you want to play your best because it’s the biggest tournament of the year.” 

The Warriors have competed and beaten some of the state’s top programs but now it will be time to put that to the test in a win or lose situation. 

“We just have to do what we’ve been doing all year and we all just need to trust in each other,” Radde said. “We must play as one team and not just for ourselves.”

 With a solid lineup of experienced upperclassmen, the team will hope to bring in their first state championship since 1989 and end off the school year with a trophy.