A new golf season has teed off for the Laramie High School program that features two very young teams.

Neither Laramie team qualified for the 4A state championships in 2022. Five individuals played in the final tournament, and two returned for LHS in 2023. Carson Moniz shot a two-round, 168, and tied for 34th place as a freshman. Colin Suloff led the Plainsmen most of the season but struggled at the state championships and shot a 172 and tied for 41st.

Those two have the most experience of any players on the 2023 roster. KOWB’s David Settle talked with both players on Tuesday to preview their season. Watch that video above.

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Carlos Mellizo is in his fourth year as head coach of LHS Golf. He has 42 golfers in the program this fall season and only six are seniors, four boys and two girls. Mellizo likes the enthusiasm shown thus far.

“We have some boys that have a lot of experience, so we must differentiate how we’re coaching these guys. There are some kids that are learning some basic, fundamentals in golf, and that’s really something that is applicable across all levels. I think, even at the top of our lineup, we’ve got some things in our swings that fundamentals will address.”

Mellizo believes they can emphasize a good grip, a good takeaway, and good rotation through the ball.

“Also, we’ll dive into some course management for those more advanced players.”

Besides Suloff and Moniz, only William Ahrens and Griffin Stender have varsity experience for the Plainsmen.

The lone returner on the girls’ roster is Anna Mukai, who has limited experience, but Mellizo loves their numbers.

“I don’t think in my tenure here as the golf coach, we’ve had as many girls out as we do this year, which is really exciting. They’re young, athletic, motivated, and fun, and you can do a lot with kids like that.”

This season might end up being more developmental than anything else.

The goal would be to get the squads to qualify for the state championships in Sheridan in mid-September.

Mellizo knows that it is a steep hill to climb. “The kids have been gearing up for that. In particular, on the boys’ side, we have two pretty seasoned veterans that have been out there. Even though Carson Moniz is a sophomore, he had a fantastic freshman year, and he knows what it takes to get to state and how to do well at state because he did last year. Colin Suloff’s the same way. We know we have our work cut out for us.”

Laramie started their season today in Douglas. They head to Cheyenne next week. Then, it’s off to Torrington, Casper, and Riverton before the state qualifier on Sept. 7 and 8 in Afton, WY, hosted by Star Valley.

Mellizo said it’s a fantastic schedule, “The fact that we get to get out on the course right away (is a bonus). We’ve had some kids playing all summer long, and they’re very excited to get out there and compete. Every tournament that we go to features some really nice players, so that’s an opportunity to know how we stack up against the rest of the state.”

The 2023 Class 4A state championships will be at the Powder Horn Golf Club in Sheridan on Sept. 15 and 16.

Laramie Rangers Baseball Firecracker Tournament 2023

Laramie Rangers Legion Baseball in action at the Firecracker Tournament in Cheyenne during the 2023 season.

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