KF ready to grow under Casteen

Published 10:02 pm Thursday, August 10, 2017

King’s Fork High School’s golf team will be under new direction this season but is looking forward to competing.

Long-time golf and tennis coach Calvin Mitchell decided to retire recently. This season, the Bulldogs’ golf team will be under new leadership under the direction of Robert Casteen. Casteen, who has been a physical education teacher at King’s Fork, has been involved with the golf team even when Mitchell was coaching.

After watching matches and practices alongside coach Mitchell last year, Casteen felt it was a position he didn’t mind taking.

Email newsletter signup

The Bulldogs have a roster of eight golfers that are excited about the season. They have three returners, while the others will be competing at the high school level for the first time. Adam Briggs, Hunter Bruff, Mason Brown and Hunter Ruggiero round out the top four golfers on the team. Briggs and Brown are both seniors, and Briggs is expecting to lead in many ways.

“I feel like we have a great group of guys,” Casteen said. “We practice every day, and even after practice they stay and do extra work. All of them love the game, and they want to get better every day. Also, our No. 1 golfer is a model citizen. He is one of those guys you hope to have on your team. He will also help some of our guys.”

The Bulldogs played their first match of the season against Great Bridge High School on Monday. Casteen described the match as a learning experience. Great Bridge is considered one of the best teams in the Southeastern District, so the Bulldogs were able to start their season off against quality competition.

“It was good learning experience, especially for some of the guys who have never played before,” Casteen said. “Getting used to 18 holes and seeing how a real match is played was a learning experience.”

Because more than half of the Bulldogs are inexperienced, Casteen makes sure he drives home the fundamentals. By teaching golfers the basics and proper golf etiquette, Casteen is hoping to save his players some of the frustrations that come with playing golf.

“I always want them to keep their composure,” he said. “Golf is a frustrating game, and you’re going to have bad shots here and there, but keep your composure. Stay within yourself and try not to get frustrated. Just take it shot to shot.”

It is extremely early in the season, but the Bulldogs see themselves progressing as the season goes on, especially playing in the Southeastern District.

King’s Fork will face Deep Creek High School at 1 p.m. Aug. 14 at Bide-A-Wee Golf Course.