Wykons Follow Bociek on Dominating Run

May 30, 2018

By Dennis Grall
Special for Second Half

NORWAY – Trey Bociek found a pretty efficient way to get around Oak Crest Golf Course here Wednesday.

The sophomore simply played bombs away off the tee, pounding his drives some 280 to 300 yards with deadly accuracy over the rolling, tree-lined 5,903 yards. He posted a career-best 74 to help his Iron River West Iron County teammates capture the Upper Peninsula Division 2 boys championship.

Bociek was the medalist and finished three shots ahead of teammate Nathan Thomson, whose brother Noah was fourth with 80. Trevor Tchida of Hancock was third at 79, while Norway's Evan Anderson was fifth with 81.

Bociek also plays hockey, for Kingsford under the co-op program. He golfs from the right side but is a lefty with a hockey stick as a center. Hockey is his favorite sport.

He struggled at the start, with a string of three bogeys before getting three birdies to close out the front nine. He had two birdies and seven pars on the back.

"The first birdie (on hole 2 following par on the short dogleg left opening hole) started me off," he said. "I got into it and had a good pace the rest of the way."

While some players said the greens were slow, Bociek was happy with the speed. "I like them that way because I can hit the ball harder," he said, adding he also was solid with his approach wedge shots.

Playing at George Young Golf Course in Gaastra, south of Iron River, has been helpful to his development because its tree-lined fairways and large greens.

Bociek said he was focused on his game of golf. "I was not worrying about anybody else," he said. "I blocked everybody out and did my thing."

Bociek pointed out the Wykons have three sophomores and two freshmen, which should bode well for the future. Coach Mark Martini agreed with Bociek that the Wykons should continue to contend.

"They don't realize this opportunity doesn't come along that often in life," he said of potentially establishing a dynasty.

Martini said Wednesday's success actually began around Easter when he sent a text to his players "to get ready for the train and the U.P. and we are going to win. We talked about it all year.

"They played like this all the time. They practice well, they listen well," he added, indicating the Wykons did not use a surprising runner-up finish at the conference finals as incentive.

The Wykons also won U.P. titles in 2003, 2008 and 2015.

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PHOTOS: (Top) Iron River West Iron County handily captured the Upper Peninsula Division 2 boys golf championship May 30 at Norway’s Oak Crest Golf Course. The Wykons finished with 315 strokes, 29 fewer than runner-up Norway. The team is comprised of, from left, Trey Bociek, Brayden Nelson, Noah Thomson, Peyton Williams, Nate Thomson and coach Mark Martini. (Middle) Bryce Bowerman of Munising chips onto the 16th green. (Photos by Dennis Grall.)

Saline's Williams-Hoak Named National Coach of the Year by LPGA Professionals

By Geoff Kimmerly
MHSAA.com senior editor

September 20, 2022

The LPGA Professionals have named Saline High School golf coach Debbie Williams-Hoak as its national Coach of the Year.

Williams-Hoak was among national award winners who were selected by the LPGA Professionals’ executive committee from a pool of Section Award winners, which were voted on by officers of those regional sections.

More on the award from LPGA Professionals:

The LPGA Professionals Coach of the Year Award was established in 1980 and is awarded annually to an LPGA Professionals member who is actively engaged in teaching and/or coaching golf at the collegiate or high school level.

LPGA Professionals Class A member Debbie Williams-Hoak knows what it takes to compete at the highest levels. She is a former LPGA Tour Player and track & field athlete who represented U.S. Track & Field in Russia and West Germany. She is a four-time Big Ten Champion, a member of the Ohio Track & Field Hall of Fame, University of Michigan Women’s Track Hall of Fame member and a member of the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame as a player, coach and teaching professional. This year, she is being inducted into the University of Michigan Athletic Hall of Honor.

Having been a multi-sport athlete accustomed to competing at the highest level, Williams-Hoak brings something unique to her coaching style. She has successfully coached boys and girls golf for the past 16 years at Saline High School in Saline, Michigan, and currently is serving as the first female president of the Michigan Interscholastic Golf Coaches Association. Williams-Hoak feels proud that every girl on her team shot career lows while maintaining 100-percent academic eligibility this season, while her boys team placed second in the conference championship and qualified for its second-straight state Finals appearance.

She is dedicated to instilling a lifelong love of the game while empowering students through golf and hopes her example will pave the way for other women coaches to lead as well.

Williams-Hoak received the 2017 Sandy LaBauve Spirit Award, the most coveted honor bestowed by LPGA*USGA Girls Golf, for her continued dedication and passion for empowering girls through golf.  She was honored with the Midwest Youth Leader of the Year and Goldie Bateson Award two times, in addition to numerous recognitions as Coach of the Year from Saline High School.

She is deeply involved with the LPGA Professionals organization, which she currently serves as the LPGA Midwest Secretary since 2021. She has been site director for LPGA*USGA Girls Golf of Greater Washtenaw Country since 2015 and acted as an advisor for the Site Director Certification program in 2021. From 2018-2021, she worked as an expert committee member for LPGA*USGA Girls Golf.  She also coached at the LPGA Leadership Academies in Michigan over the last two years.

"I am extremely humbled by this award, as there are so many outstanding LPGA coaches in our association. What an honor to represent the LPGA, the state of Michigan and the game of golf as a coach,” said Williams-Hoak. “It is a privilege to work with so many wonderful players who make coaching so rewarding. I am also fortunate to have such great fellow coaches in Michigan and throughout the LPGA. Thank you so much for this very special recognition."

PHOTO: Saline golf coach Debbie Williams-Hoak, far left, stands for the trophy shot with her girls team after the Hornets won the 2016 Lower Peninsula Division 1 championship. (MHSAA file photo)