Even with difficult course conditions, the Canyon Del Oro golf team rallied together to finish third in the Division II state championship on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 25-26, at Aguila Golf Course.
Junior Chris Meyers led the team by finishing third in the individuals, just two strokes behind the winner, Austin Stadeli from Notre Dame Preparatory High School. Also receiving a medal was his teammate Frankie Wu who placed 10th.
It came as no surprise to spectators that the CDO golf team finished in the top three and individually medaled along the way. For the past four years, the CDO golf team has made it to the state championships. In 2009 they were the state runner-up, in 2010 and 2011 they were state champions, and last year they finished as the state runner-up.
“Every school knows who we are and expecting that we’re going to be good,” said head coach John Farbarik. “That’s a good thing. This year though we are not the favorite, but that’s okay. We’ve been the lead dog and having people snip at us the last couple years. I don’t mind being the one that nobody is thinking about.”
Unlike any other golf program in the area, Farbarik doesn’t cut any players from his team. Contrary to most teams who have 8-12 players, Farbarik works with 25 players.
“We try to serve the two masters of being a top flight competitive team and also a participation team,” said Farbarik. “We encourage the younger players to focus on improving, not what team they are on.”
Farbarik has been the head coach for eight years and during that time has had the privilege of coaching some of the top high school golf players in the city. One of those is Meyers who is currently ranked as the number one player in Southern Arizona. Meyers medaled in the Mesa Dobson Ranch Invitational as well as the Aguila Boys Golf Invitational this year. Alongside Meyers is Wu who medaled in the Ridge Invitational and placed second at the Mesa Dobson Ranch Invitational.
“They are outstanding players,” said Farbarik. “Both were first team all-southern Arizona last year.”
Even though he is given all the credit for his accolades, Meyers says that it is because of the coaching staff that the himself and the rest of the golf team has had so much success.
“It is great having him because he (Farbarik) gets us on the nicest golf courses and gives us the most opportunities from what I have seen,” said Meyers. “We are in way more tournaments than most teams – that helps us improve a lot.”
With Meyers and two other players from the state tournament this year returning, Farbarik is hopeful for next years golf season.
“I think we will be competitive next year and have a run at the title,” said Farbarik. “When I’m asked: ‘what will it (the team) look like next year?’ – my answer to that is that it will be a direct result of how much work is put in now to the beginning of the season.”