Norway, West Iron's Thomson Take Championship Strides

By Matt McCarthy
Special for Second Half

June 2, 2021

GAASTRA — West Iron County's Nathan Thomson enjoyed the comforts of competing at his home course Wednesday, as the Wykons senior captured the MHSAA Upper Peninsula Division 2 boys golf championship at the George Young Recreational Complex in Iron County.

Thomson, a senior, shot a 77 to take home medalist. 

"The greens were really fast today, faster than I have ever seen here," said Thomson. "I play here almost every single day. But it's awesome to win U.P.'s here." 

It was also a blustery day at times, which Thomson noted came up in spurts.

"There was a point on hole 11, where I could see the ball moving on the green because of the wind, as I was waiting to putt," Thomson added. 

Norway golfNorway took home the team title by a significant margin over runner-up Hancock, 328-357, with four Knights finishing among the top seven individuals including runner-up Jeffrey VanHolla with a 78. 

The team title was Norway’s fourth and first since 1988. The Knights had finished Division 2 runners-up six of the last eight seasons, including back-to-back to West Iron County in both 2018 and 2019.

Evan Anderson shot an 80 to finish third, followed by Drew Anderson with an 84 in fifth and Carson Chartier with an 86 for seventh. Tyler Parker with a 105 rounded out Norway's lineup on the day. 

Two years ago (before COVID-19 caused last season to be canceled), Drew Anderson was second and VanHolla and Thomson tied for third at the Division 2 Final which also was at George Young.

"I don't know what else was different here today besides the fast greens, but I usually shoot lower scores here, especially the last two rounds I played here before today," said Drew Anderson, a junior this season.

Fourth place among individuals went to Mason Mikesch of Hancock with an 81. Finishing in sixth place was Jeff Starzynski of Stephenson with an 85, and Justin Carrick of Brimley and Ricky Brown of Iron Mountain tied for eighth place with 87s. Chad Nordstrom of Hancock and Josh Magnusen of Newberry tied for 10th with 90s.

On the team side, Brimley was third with a 382. The next three teams were separated by two strokes – St. Ignace fourth at 405, Iron Mountain fifth at 406 and Pickford seven carding a 407.

Newberry at 416, Watersmeet at 419, Munising at 422, Stephenson at 433 and Bark River-Harris at 520 rounded out the team scores.  

Click for full results.

PHOTOS: (Top) West Iron County's Nathan Thomson unloads a drive during his championship round Wednesday. (Middle) Norway celebrates its first team Finals title since 1988. (Photos by Matt McCarthy.)

Be the Referee: Animal Interference

By Paige Winne
MHSAA Marketing & Social Media Coordinator

September 20, 2023

Be The Referee is a series of short messages designed to help educate people on the rules of different sports, to help them better understand the art of officiating, and to recruit officials.

Below is this week's segment – Animal Interference - Listen

In golf – it’s common to hear about birdies, eagles, maybe even an albatross. Or in my case, a snowman. But what if an actual animal interferes with your ball while in play?

There are two kinds of interference.

The first involves a ball still in motion. If you are putting and a squirrel darts out and stops or redirects your putt, you simply get a do-over from the original spot.

Off the green, if a moving ball is stopped or re-directed, you play the ball from where it ultimately stops.

If your ball is stopped and a seagull picks it up and carries it off – you just replace the ball to its original spot and proceed.

It doesn’t happen often, but now you know how to deal with squirrels and seagulls … in addition to birdies and eagles.

Previous Editions

Sept. 13: Feet Rule on Soccer Throw-In - Listen
Sept. 6: Volleyball Jewelry - Listen
Aug. 30: Football Rules Similarities - Listen
Aug. 23: Football Rules Differences - Listen

(PHOTO by Gary Shook.)