In last week’s edition of the Triangle News, we reported a bronze medal in discus for Coronach’s Emma Dyck. We have one more to report this week!
Riley Grona, Coronach golfer, golfed with Team Saskatchewan at the Western Canadian Summer Games in Kamloops from August 10-13, 2011 and scored a bronze medal.
Grona flew out with the second wave of Saskatchewan athletes, flying out on August 10, arriving in Kamloops in the afternoon.
He and his teammates golfed a practise round on August 11 and started the tournament on the morning of the 12. The golfers golfed 18 holes for each of three days. Grona scored a 75, 74 and 73 in each of his rounds on the par 72 course. Riley talked about his rounds, “I could have played a lot better if I would have putted better,” he said. “It was a really hard course because you had to hit 20 feet past the hole because the greens were so soft,” said Riley about the Kamloops course. He noticed quite a difference in the courses in Saskatchewan that he is more accustomed to playing on. He wondered if the humidity or sea level affected the surface and play of the course. “The ball didn’t fly as far,” said Riley. According to Riley, he had to club up to get the same distance he was used to.
Riley qualified to play with Team Saskatchewan at the games through his placement in the Order of Merit golf tour in 2009-10 and his play so far this year. Since gaining a spot on the team, Grona has been working on his game with Matt Miller from the Wascana Golf Club in Regina.
Riley placed 9th overall and helped his team to win a bronze medal. He and teammates Liam Courtney from Saskatoon, Garrett Blair from Lanigan and Daegan Wall from Regina. The boys worked with coach Phil Groose from Saskatoon while in Kamloops. “He was a great coach who taught us a lot.” Riley said the Saskatchewan team was “shooting” for second place with Team British Columbia taking an early lead in the tournament. Team Alberta was in second place after Day 1, with Team Sask hot on their heels, but. . . “We just didn’t play good enough,” said Riley. “We were only 4 or 5 behind after day one but then after Day 2 we were behind 11.”
Riley has participated in many golf tournaments, as far away as Singapore, but this was his first experience being a part of provincial team of athletes of all types. After traveling together, the golfers stayed with all of the other athletes in dorms. “It was different because you were with all the other great athletes. You could hang out and talk about the different sports.” Riley also talked about the activities that were organized for the athletes. “We had lots of stuff to do after our rounds. We would go with the players we golfed against and have a ping pong tournament. That was fun.”
Riley has had a busy summer, with the Kamloops tournament only one of many weekend tournaments. “It has been a little wild!” said Riley. “Always on the road - every weekend.”
The highlight of his golf this year was a tie for first place in at the Tor Hill / Wascana SJGA tournament where he golfed two 73s on the par 72 course. He talked about the rest of the year. “Golf’s going good. I am trying to make it to Florida for Nationals. I am pretty sure I made it.” said Riley.
Keep your eye on the Triangle News for further updates on Riley.