By Gary R. Rasberry
The links version of the Battle of Grand Lake took place near Grand Lake on Monday as Celina and St. Marys opened the Western Buckeye League dual match season at Northmoor.
While the Bulldogs' top two golfers outplayed the Roughriders; One and Two, it was the final four for St. Marys that came through as St. Marys took home a 155-161 win in nine-hole action.
The Roughriders' top two golfers, Mark Dieringer and Todd Laman, struggled as both shot 40 or worse on the Par-36 course. Celina countered with a 37 from Scott Luthman and a 38 from Paul VanDeventer.
But the second group to come in showed the Roughriders had the advantage. Mike Schmitmeyer came in with the medalist round of an even 36 while Trent Paulus carded a 41. Celina had trouble in the second set. Patrick Bailey came away with a 41 but Darren Fleck had a nine-over 45.
The Bulldogs needed good rounds from the Five and Six to make a run, but both Jason Liest and Ryan Moran came in with 45s. St. Marys saved the day as Danny Irons shot a 38 while Jeremy Dominik came home with 44. "That's why you play six (golfers)," said St. Marys coach Denny Vogel. "It was a good way to start the season, although it wasn't what I expected. I would have expected my seniors to come through but it was my younger kids that played the game. Celina outplayed up at the top but we were able to play better at the bottom."
Celina coach Keith VanDeventer was less than pleased after tallying up the scores.
"It was a pretty disapointing day for all of us," said VanDeventer. "We were shooting to shoot 160 or lower on a road match. We got close to that. But if we ever want to win we have to shoot better, especially on the road."
Celina travels to Indian Lake today for a dual match. St. Marys is off until Thursday when the Roughriders face Defiance at Kettering.
St. Marys's junior varsity made it a Roughrider sweep with a 166-178 win over Celina. Kyle Dieringer was medalist with 38.