Montabella’s Balhorn reaches state finals


By Bruce Bentley • Last Updated 10:15 am on Friday, June 06, 2014

Montabella’s Josh Balhorn during a round last year as a freshman. Balhorn qualified as a sophomore for the Division 4 state finals.

BATTLE CREEK — Josh Balhorn is just a sophomore.

Regardless of his age, the Montabella golfer has displayed enough skill this year to qualify for the Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 4 state golf finals at Bedford Valley Golf Course in Battle Creek today and Saturday.

The sophomore qualified with his best round of the year at regionals last week at Muskegon Country Club. Balhorn’s round of 79 was tied for the 11th best qualifying round among the 90 golfers to reach the state finals. It was the second best round of the regional tournament.

“I expected to be a little better than last year,” Balhorn said. “Last year, my goal was to break 100, which I did. This year, my goal was to break 90 and I did that too.

“At regionals, I played very well and shot under 80 (79),” he added.

Of the 90 golfers (15 teams of five and 15 individual golfers), just 19 are sophomores and nine freshman.

“Joshua was able to bring two excellent 9-hole rounds together,” Montabella coach Nicole Howe said. “His swing was on point and he was dropping putts when he needed to.”

Balhorn played a practice round at Bedford Valley on Thursday.

“My practice round went all right,” Balhorn said. “The back nine is a lot tougher than the front. There are a lot of trees on the back and it’s narrow.”

While excited to be at the state finals, Balhorn doesn’t have any expectations for the two-day tournament.

“I don’t have any expectations because I’m a sophomore,” he said. “My goal is to come back next year, but I don’t really have any expectations for this year. There are a lot of good scorers out there.”

Balhorn credits his coach with his improvement.

“I’ve gotten a lot bigger and my coach has really helped this year,” Balhorn said. “I didn’t listen a lot last year, but this year I’ve actually listened.”

Balhorn also plays football and basketball for Montabella.

Division 4 State Qualifiers

Team qualifiers

Lincoln Alcona 324

Auburn Hills Oakland Christian 328

Charlevoix 333

Traverse City St. Francis 333

Kalamazoo Hackett 335

North Muskegon 341

White Pigeon 343

Clarkston Everest Collegiate 345

Grosse Pointe Woods Uni. Liggett 350

Gobles 352

Mt. Pleasant Sacred Heart 353

Pentwater 356

Fowler 357

New Lothrop 357

Elkton-Pigeon Bay Port Laker 380

 

Individual qualifiers, score

Joel Sneed, 68 Leland

Devin Capron, 70 Suttons Bay

Zach Rose, 77 St. Joseph Lake Mi. Catholic

Hunter Weeks, 77 Homer

Alex Stanton, 78 Mesick

Logan Heffner, 79 Centreville

Joshua Balhorn, 79 Montabella

Colin Hindle, 80 Ann Arbor Greenhills

Noah Schneider, 80 Jackson Christian

Grant Konkle, 82 Springport

Jacob Voss, 82 Addison

Dan Sauer, 83 Rochester Hills Lutheran NW

Tyler Glaza, 84 Ubly

Tyler Neering, 84 Bay City All Saints

David Ross, 84 Sandusky

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