Chipelewski Leads Talented Marquette Lineup to Impressive Title-Clinching 300

By Caden Sierra
Special for

May 30, 2024

MARQUETTE — The Marquette boys golf team showcased its depth while taking advantage of its home Marquette Golf Club course Wednesday to capture the team title at the MHSAA Upper Peninsula Division 1 Final

The young Sentinels separated themselves from the competition by more than 20 strokes, taking the top spot with an impressive four-player score of 300 while placing three of the top five individuals. They beat out runner-up Houghton, which had 321, and third-place Escanaba with 325.

Manistique came in fourth with 332 strokes, followed by Calumet in fifth with 333.

“These kids put in a ton of time, and we had a lot of depth,” veteran MSHS head coach Ben Smith said right after the result was determined. “Not only playing here today, but a lot of kids who have been in matches and played really well throughout the spring. 

“It’s never easy … 300 is a really good score, and I'm really proud of the kids and the effort that they put in.”

Houghton’s Marino Pisani watches his tee shot on the first hole.The Sentinels’ Kaleb Chipelewski won the medalist honor by topping the leaderboard with 72 to edge teammate Boden Moore by a single stroke. The tight race for the top was followed by Baraga’s Cage Osterman just another stroke back at 74, with three more golfers tying for fourth with 75 — Marquette’s Jack Pond, Houghton’s Brenden Jukuri and Escanaba’s Shane Wallin.

“I played really good; my (place) was high,” Chipelewski said. “Just came in, birdies on (Nos.) 2 and 3. Then bogeyed (Nos.) 7, 11 and 12, scored a couple more. It was really nice.”

Moore was both happy and a bit frustrated after coming so close to the top. 

“I hit the ball really well, played really well, just couldn't get a putt to go in pretty much,” the runner-up said. “I ate a bunch of pars, but the team had a great round, so it (is) a good win.”

Pond had his own take on the Final, making a reference to NBA legend Michael Jordan — perhaps an unusual reference for someone who wasn’t even born when the famed Chicago Bulls player won his half-dozen league titles.

“It was like my MJ-flu-type game,” he said, referring to the time Jordan was sick but still gutted out one of his best games in the finals. “Started off slow, shot a good score on the back nine for how tough it was out there. I started off hot with 1-under(-par) through (No.) 6 and then finished with a few bogeys, but ended up being a really good day overall."

The entire top 10 — actually a top 13 with a big logjam around 10th place — all shot in the 70s.

After the logjam for fourth, Westwood’s Tanner Annala was next in seventh with 76, while Escanaba's Graham Johnson was eighth with 77. Then came a five-way tie for ninth, each with 79 — Jonah Slawinski of Menominee, Ben Anderson of Calumet, Marino Pisani of Houghton, Carson Kronemeyer of Sault Ste. Marie and Landen Dougherty of Manistique. 

Marquette's Pavel McCutcheon and Kingsford senior Lance Harry came right in at 80 to tie for 14th place.

“These kids have pretty good nerves and hang in there when there are some tough stretches,” Smith said. “They play some high-quality golf when they need to, and it was really nice to see them do that today.”

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PHOTOS (Top) Marquette's Kaleb Chipelewski addresses his putt on the ninth hole during the MHSAA Upper Peninsula Division 1 Final on Wednesday at Marquette Golf Club. (Middle) Houghton’s Marino Pisani watches his tee shot on the first hole. (Photos by Caden Sierra.)

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