Lakeview’s Wandel ready for golf state finals

By Bruce Bentley • Last Updated 2:16 pm on Thursday, June 05, 2014

Lakeview’s Jon Wandel hits a shot during his junior season last year. Wandel is competing Friday and Saturday in the Division 3 golf state finals at The Meadows at Grand Valley State University.

LAKEVIEW — Lakeview senior Jon Wandel is a legitimate state championship contender.

Wandel will compete Friday and Saturday in the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) Division 3 state golf finals at The Meadows at Grand Valley State University. Wandel qualified as an individual with rounds of 78 at districts and 77 at regionals.

Wandel’s 77 at regionals tied him with three others for match medalist honors. In fact, of all state final qualifiers, only 10 shot a better regional score than Wandel. Lansing Catholic’s Brent Marshall had the low regional round of 73.

“Jon had a great senior season. He served notice to the league that he was determined this year by opening up the season with a 75 at Tullymore,” Lakeview coach Brian Corwin said. “He continued his strong play with runner up finishes at the Lakeview Invitational and the Greenville Invitational. He also had a top 10 finish at the Cardinal Invitational in Big Rapids.”

It was a different approach to the game that has put Wandel among the best in the state.

“I’ve been going out practicing, playing and taking notes and realizing the spots I could miss a shot or where I could get away with a shot,” Wandel said. “That has helped me out in the long run and to the point I’m at right now.”

The approach definitely helped Wandel out at regionals where he struggled with some clubs. His putter, though, was working just fine.

“I didn’t hit the ball really well. I just stuck to the things I knew and stepped back and said these are the most consistent clubs I have,” Wandel said. “My putter was working and that became clutch. I needed the putter.

“To be honest I should have shot a 73 or 74. There were a lot of shots left out there. I made the putts I should have made. In all, it was a solid round, but one that should have been a few shots better,” he added.

In all, 15 teams (five golfers for each team) and 15 individuals qualified for the state finals.

On Wednesday, Wandel planned to play a practice round at The Meadows.

“I look for Jon to continue his consistent play in the state finals this weekend. He has had some very productive practices this week, working on all aspects of his game,” Corwin said. “The Meadows should suite Jon’s game very well and I look for him to compete with the best in the state in Division 3.”

Scoring the way he has means Wandel can hit pretty much everything in his bag but he says he is best with his irons.

“From 150 yards in, I can pretty much put the ball where I want to,” Wandel said. “My long irons are coming around this year.”

There is a fine line between success and failure in the game of golf. The requires skill with the clubs and confidence in yourself to make the shots needed.

Wandel has the skill and definitely the confidence.

“I’m not trying to get a head of myself. I feel pretty confident going down,” Wandel said. “I don’t see myself being outside of the top 10. I’m very excited and have been looking forward to this since last year.”

Wandel won’t be finished golfing after this weekend as he has signed to play at the next level for Rochester College.

Division 3 State Final Qualifiers

Team qualifiers

Jackson Lumen Christ 309

Lansing Catholic 309

Manistee 313

GR South Christian 317

Kalkaska 321

Almont 322

Hanover-Horton 322

Flint Powers Catholic 323

Ludington 325

Grosse Ile 327

St. Charles 328

Williamston 328

Olivet 335

GR West Catholic 336

Macomb Lutheran North 340


Individual qualifiers, score

Timmy Janis, 76 Tawas Area

Colin McGinnis, 76 NorthPointe Christian

Nick Ludka, 77 Saginaw Nouvel

Michael Mayberry, 77 Flat Rock

Jon Wandel, 77 Lakeview

Jake Hinkle, 78 Grayling

Kevin Masini, 78 AA Gabriel Richard

Wesley Potts, 78 Lake Fenton

Andrew Skibski, 78 Monroe St. Mary CC

Rhett Schrauben, 79 Portland

Rage Sheldon, 79 Maple Valley

Bryce Vandenbelt, 79 Essexeville Garber

Josh McCurry, 80 Farwell

Daniel Wagner, 80 Frankenmuth

Noah Kosal, 83 Richmond

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