BOZEMAN — The Bozeman Gallatin Raptors boys golf team only lost two meets last year. One of those losses was the State AA golf meet. This year, they’re looking to win it all, but also they’re looking to just have fun.
“Runner up for Gallatin's first year is not bad," said senior Jordan Verge. "I can’t complain with that.”
With a team of juniors and below last year and a second place finish at state, expectations are rightfully high for this squad.
“We’ve got high expectations for ourselves," said senior Stephen Voigt. "We think we’ve got the ability to play our best golf every week and we really want to see what we can do.
“A lot of our guys have improved a lot," Verge said. "We have very high expectations this year. Hopefully, we’ll get it done.”
With those high expectations comes pressure.
“We feel a little bit of pressure, but it’s really nice to have a tight squad like this because the pressure just goes away when we’re just goofing off and having fun with each other and practicing hard,” Voigt said.
After a disappointing finish for their own standards, there’s room to learn from it.
“I think there was some disappointment at state, understandably," said head coach Matt Clark. "I think there’s some lessons learned from that. I mean, golf’s crazy. You can play well on some days and not so well on other days and last year at state (Missoula) Sentinel was just better than us and you got to give them credit.”
On this team, the top five golfers are twin brothers Jordan and Justus Verge (who came in second and third in state), Ramey Lloyd, Stevie Voigt (seventh in state) and the only junior in the group Gavin Klein. Any single one of them can win a tournament at any time.
“It’s kind of a nice problem to have if number five shoots a competitive score," Clark said. "We are such good team players, everyone wants everyone to do really well on our team and then each tournament. Hopefully, this year is a two day tournament, so if you’re the number five guy on day one, you could potentially be the number one guys on day two.”
Mentioned before, it's all about having fun for the Raptors in their second year as a team.
“We’re just excited. Just keep playing and see what happens. At this point, we want to win but we want to just keep playing and not be focused on one certain thing,” Voigt said.