BUTTERNUT — Just because some students are being home-schooled doesn’t mean they can’t make up a golf team. They also can play just as well as golfers who play on public school teams.
That’s the case with the Butternut Homeschoolers, who have been playing right along with the high school teams in the area and beyond.
They’ve been doing successfully this year.
“We have three families that have good athletes and good golfers,” said coach Steve Crouse. “This year we have a couple of seniors and a couple of juniors that are playing well. My two boys and the Wyman boys are usually the top two boys.”
His boys are David and Isaac Crouse, while the Wyman boys are Elijah, Caleb and Isaiah.
“They started playing pretty good golf last year,” Steve Crouse said. “I couldn’t tell how strong they’d be until the end of last summer. Once we got playing they got better.”
In fact, Butternut finished second by one stroke to Saginaw Nouvel Catholic Central at the Lakeview Invitational April 27. After Crouse got together with Nouvel’s coaches, Butternut went to Saginaw Country Club to face the Panthers and Hemlock and beat the Panthers by a stroke. The Huskies were a distant third.
“I didn’t know how good Nouvel was since I never read anything about them,” Crouse said. “They’re not one of the top teams in the state this year but they’ve been really strong for years.”
Crouse said it wasn’t hard to determine who the No. 1 golfer would be at any tournament they play in despite the golfers being so close in average score.
‘Usually I just ask them,” he said. “Caleb’s our best golfer. David has been playing better as far as average this year but Caleb’s our best golfer. So I ask them and they’ll say, ‘Yeah, I’ll go one.’ You can pretty much interchange any one of them. It doesn’t bother them. They don’t care.”
While Crouse has depth on this year’s team, he won’t have such a luxury next year.
“David my son is a senior and he’s done,” he said. “Caleb Wyman is a junior but he’s finishing early so I don’t think he’s coming back next year. Next year we’ll have two of those top four and we’ll have to figure out some guys to come up and help. We do have a couple of guys who are going to be decent next year too.”
Caleb Wyman loves being able to play against public school teams.
“For the most part it’s nice,” Wyman said. “We don’t get a chance to play with the very often. They’re very nice to let us come and play in their tournaments.”
Wyman noted how good his team is.
“We’re playing well,” he said. “We’re pretty consistent. Our scores have been pretty solid. We’re doing well and we’re on a good role.”
Wyman said the camaraderie on the team helps them be successful.
“We’re all comfortable,” he said. “We have real good friendships and we’re really comfortable on the course.”