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HHS boys' golf and junior Nick Dittrich on a roll over past week

The Hastings boys' golf team poses with its trophy after winning the Don Saatzer Tournament. Photo courtesy of Pete McGinnis1 / 3
Junior Nick Dittrich sinks a putt on 17 at the Don Saatzer Tournament. Photo courtesy of Pete McGinnis2 / 3
Freshman Sam Brown attempts to get out of the bunker. Photo courtesy of Pete McGinnis3 / 3

The Hastings boys' golf team put together three strong finishes over the last week, including winning their home invite, the Don Saatzer Tournament. The Raiders took third at Stillwater on May 2, second in a tri-meet May 4 with Henry Sibley and Simley, then won the Don Saatzer May 8 at Dakota Pines Golf Club.

Mid-conference tournament

The Metro East's mid-conference tournament was held in Stillwater at Oak Glen Golf Course. Hastings took third with a total score of 321. Junior Nick Dittrich won the tournament of 57 golfers by shooting a 69 — just the fourth time in over 20 years that a Raider golfer has shot below 70.

"He does all the little things right," head coach Pete McGinnis said about Dittrich. "When he misses the green, he puts it close to tap in for par. His course management and ball striking skills have made him the top golfer in the conference at the midway point."

"One of the keys to this year is that I've been able to play my best when I needed to," Dittrich said. "When I need to play my best I do, though I need to work on my ball striking."

Freshman Sam Brown was second on the team with an 83, followed just behind by senior Zach Johnson who shot an 84. Freshman Terry Kuhn shot an 85, while junior Jack Williams came in with an 89 and senior Charlie Wenker a 92.

Henry Sibley and Simley

Hastings hosted Henry Sibley and Simley in a tri-meet where Simley edged out the Raiders by one shot to win. Hastings shot a 171, led by Dittrich who won the meet with a 38. Kuhn and junior Jake Erickson both shot 44s, while both Williams and Johnson added 45s. Brown shot a 48.

"Simley beat us by one shot today," McGinnis said. "It is always hard to know what everyone is doing on the course so we have to continue work on finishing our rounds."

Henry Sibley shot a 205 to finish third.

Don Saatzer Tournament

Hastings won the Don Saatzer Tournament over eight other teams at their home course of Dakota Pines. The Raiders shot a combined score of 331.

Dittrich went head-to-head with the top golfer in the state, Caleb Van Arragon from Blaine. The two were tied going into the last hole where Dittrich was able to save par to edge out Van Arragon who had to take a seven.

Dittrich shot a 71 in what he called "one of the most interesting 71s I've ever shot." He made eight birdies, five of which came on the front nine, but also had a few crooked numbers that kept him from an amazing number.

Kuhn and Johnson both shot 86s, followed by Williams with an 88, Brown an 89 and Erickson a 92.

"I thought the greens were running pretty quick today so not every short putt was an easy one," McGinnis explained. "It is always nice to play well in your own tournament."

Hastings faced off against Tartan and North St. Paul on May 9, hosted Hill-Murray and South St. Paul on May 10, and then travels to South St. Paul on Thursday, May 11.

Alec Hamilton

Alec Hamilton is a sports reporter and general assignment reporter at the Hastings Star Gazette. He is a journalism graduate of Drake University.

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