The Resorters Junior 13-15 title was handed to Thomas Gogel on Saturday at the Alexandria Golf Club after the Mission Hills, Kan. golfer beat Edina’s Charlie Moen 5-4.
“It feels really good. I’m so happy right now,” Gogel said. “I was shocked. Honestly, I didn’t think I’d be here. It’s amazing.”
An impressive front nine gave Gogel a lead that Moen couldn’t come back from. He shot 1-over in the first nine holes, including a birdie on No. 1. Gogel won Nos. 1, 4, 5, 6 and 9 to go 5-up heading into the turn. He started the back nine in a similar fashion. A birdie put him 6-up with a commanding lead over Moen.
Moen found his swing on the back nine. After a rough stretch of bogeys, two pars cut Gogel’s lead to four. Gogel made par on 13 to go back to 5-up. Both players shot par on No. 15, which gave Gogel the 5-4 win.
“Charlie is a really good golfer. He doesn’t miss sideways,” Gogel said. “He hits the ball straight and one or two putts almost every hole. That’s not easy to beat.”
Gogel played his final year in the Junior 13-15 Division. He’s come a long way since he first entered as a 13-year-old.
“I played in this division two years ago,” Gogel said. “I lost in the first round. I think I’ve gotten a lot better since then. I can hit the ball further now, and I don’t let mistakes get to me as much.”
Next summer, Gogel will play in the Men’s Championship Division. The leap from Juniors to Champs is something he hopes he can make.
“My goal is to make the cut next year,” Gogel said. “I want to keep improving and play well enough to compete next year. I know it’s a step, but I’m excited to come back.”
Alexandria’s Carver Larson took home the top prize in the Junior 10-12 Division. He beat Charlie Hanson on Saturday morning.
Larson beat sixth-seeded Blake Scholl and second-seeded Carson Boe to meet top-ranked Hanson in the final. Larson, the third-seed, won his first Junior 10-12 Championship.