Battle Mountain’s Crisofulli wins at Vail
VAIL — Win the Masters, get a green jacket. Win the Vail Mountain School Invitational? Go to Moe's Original Bar B Que? Battle Mountain's Tanner Crisofulli put up a 75 on Tuesday at the Vail Golf Club and that was a winner. So like any teenager, it was time to eat. "I was definitely hungry," Crisofulli said after his trip to Moe's. "I was pretty happy with my round, except for the putting. For the first three holes, I could not make a putt to save my life." Starting on 17, Crisofulli committed the cardinal sin at Vail — being above the pin. That is never good. The level of accompanying disaster depends on the player. For Crisofulli, that was bogey on the par-3 17th, birdie on the par-5 18th and par on the par-4 first. It's not a bad stretch of golf, even par, but the Battle Mountain senior was looking to make hay, read eagle, on the "new" 18th 443-yard par 5, while the first was a birdie opportunity squandered. Crisofulli said his putter got into the swing of things after about six holes and he was on his way to a win. Gotta be the shorts Aspen — big surprise — won the team competition. It's got to be the shorts from Loudmouth Golf. The Skiers have been leaders on the Western Slope when it comes to golf fashion. VMS was just four strokes behind on Tuesday. Oliver Pesso led the Gore Rangers with a 79, while Ben Barron had an 80 and Dylan Hardenbergh came around at 87. Pesso finished fourth with his round, which included birdies on Nos. 11 and 12. "I think today my biggest thing was chipping," the VMS junior said. "I didn't have it today. I need to work on that a little more, getting up and down. I left some shots out there." Durango looming The short game, a little thing that's really not so little, is increasingly becoming the focus for all four local squads. Tuesday's tournament marked just two weeks until the regional tournament down in Durango. Along those lines, Eagle Valley wrapped its JV season on Tuesday. Quinn McCord led the youngsters with a 95. Tanner Caldarola, Jay Bullock, Michael Sandoval, Keaton Fedrizzi and McCord will be the five that Devils coach Tom Buzbee said will make the annual northern swing (Yampa Valley today and Haymaker on Thursday) and battle it out for the four spots on the Eagle Valley regional team. Vail Christian's Cooper Gould is the defending regional champion, but he had a rough Tuesday with an 80. The Saints finished sixth as a team but were without Tony Clark. The senior, who usually vies for the top spot on the Vail Christian team with Gould, is on a college trip. By rotation among the Western Slope teams, regionals are in Durango, a long trip in itself. Combine the state sites for 3A and 4A and state-qualifiers will get a lot of mileage during the next month. The 3A state tournament is up in Sterling, while the best of 4A are headed to Pueblo. Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, email@example.com and @cfreud.