The Lake Country Charity Golf Invitational every spring is always a grand thing.
Put on by retired Arrowhead coach Tom Tallmadge and the Warhawk staff, it has succeeded in raising over $400,000 in its history for the MACC Fund (Milwaukee Athletes Against Childhood Cancer) including a marvelous $73,400 this year.
All the teams taking part fund-raise or dip into various accounts to contribute.
"It's a tremendous effort by Tom (Tallmadge) and Arrow-head," said Homestead coach Steve O'Brien. "With the amount they have now raised, it says an awful lot about the high school golfing community. It just reiterates the purpose of the meet, what the real purpose of the event actually is."
But with that heartening foundation behind them, the teams are still out there to play golf and compete in an elite field and on an elite course (Brown Deer).
Which brings us back to Homestead, which won the chilly, windy but dry April 26 version of the annual event.
O'Brien is pleased, but is not going to read too much into the triumph just yet.
"We'd been in school for a full week (after break), but some other teams were not at full strength," he said. "It's a good start. We do have some high expectations and its good to see the kids rise above them."
The Highlanders turned in an 18-hole 319 score to win the 18-school division 1 of the event as Marquette was a close second with 321.
Charlie Maleki led the way for the Highlanders with an individual runner-up finish score of 77 as Marquette's Harrison Ott won with a 75.
Maleki got help from Ryan Wirthlin and Robbie Morway, who tied for sixth individually with 79 each. Finishing out the Homestead scoring was Zach Shahrokhi who came in with an 84.
O'Brien said that the players did a nice job of handling the rugged conditions.
"It was cool and very windy," he said, "but it was dry. The course was in better than expected shape. They played what I called 'pick, clean and cheat' (laughs) on the fairways, and the greens were very hard and rolling quite nicely."
O'Brien has been very encouraged by the leadership shown by Maleki and Shahrokhi.
"They're very much co-leaders," he said. 'Much more than anybody else so far. Under these winter (like) conditions the kids managed their emotions very well. They occasionally used gloves, and they kept their heads on straight."
He also was impressed with the freshman Morway.
Homestead, if the weather held, took part in the Brookfield Central Invite on April 30 and now will look forward to the Onalaska Invitational on Friday, May 2.
Whitefish Bay also was at the event, taking seventh in Division 2 with a 351 score as Green Bay Notre Dame won the 15-team event with a 326 mark.
Junior Adam Dallimore led the Blue Dukes by being part of a six-way tie for fourth individually with an 82, while sophomore Patrick Sicula tied for 10th with an 83. Also helping out for the Blue Dukes were senior Beau Talbert with an 89 and junior Hank Grunau with a 97.
Sicula, a first-team All-North Shore Conference selection a year ago, is the only player with any real varsity experience returning for Whitefish Bay.
Coach Frank Donadio said the team will be quite competitive internally this season with others like senior Ryan Olver, juniors Matt Gaeta and Max Comerford and sophomores Carter Heston and Teddy Weber also in the mix.
"I really like the makeup of this team and their work ethic," said Donadio. "They enjoy the internal competition at practices, yet support and help each other. I expect we will improve as more players get more game day experience, and we get deeper into the season."
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