Dylan Fritz has played 12 rounds of golf this season for Coronado’s boys golf team, and he didn’t break par in any of the first six.
But the sophomore has been on a tear during the second half of the schedule.
Fritz, fresh off winning medalist honors at the Class 4A Sunrise Region tournament last week, will look to continue his hot play during the Class 4A state tournament Monday and Tuesday at Toiyabe Golf Club in Washoe Valley.
The Class 3A (Spring Creek Golf Course) and Class 2A/1A (Eagle Valley Golf Course in Carson City) state tournaments also begin Monday.
“Right before spring break, I won the last (Southeast League) tournament, and it was good to finally put a good round together,” Fritz said. “My putting has been really good during this stretch.”
Fritz, who tied for 10th at state as a freshman, shot 1-under-par 71 at Black Mountain on April 6 after struggling for the opening month.
He followed that up two weeks later with a final-round 66 at Southern Highlands to win the Southern Nevada Invitational and then shot 67 and 68 in the final two Southeast League matches.
At the Sunrise Region tournament, Fritz carded a 3-over 75 at Reflection Bay Golf Club despite howling wind that gusted in excess of 40 mph throughout the back nine.
“Dylan’s been great. He’s been our guy since spring break,” Coronado coach Joe Sawaia said. “The last four or five weeks, he’s just been lights out for us. He started off slow, and I knew he’d come around. Staying patient with him has paid off, and he’s been patient, too.”
Fritz hopes to take advantage of his length off the tee on the 6,731-yard layout at Toiyabe, where scattered showers are in the forecast for the opening round.
Fritz is in the first group that tees off at noon, along with two-time defending state champion Jack Trent of Palo Verde, Northern Region champion Connor Motherway of Galena and Arbor View’s Hazen Newman.
“It’s going to be tough not knowing the course, but our attitude is high,” Fritz said. “I’m always a confident player, even when when I’m down. Now that we’ve started playing well, everybody’s confidence is high on the team.”
Coronado set a state record by posting 15-under 345 at Chimera in the final Southeast League match on May 2 and won its fourth straight region title last week.
The Cougars, seeking their first state title since 2012, are expected to contend with defending champion Palo Verde, Galena, Faith Lutheran and Bishop Manogue in what should be a tight race.
“The Northern teams are really strong. Obviously, Palo is the defending champ, and they’re great,” Sawaia said. “As good as the teams are, I do think it’s still wide open. I like this group of guys. They’re super young, but this is probably the closest-knit group we’ve had in a long time. And you can’t put a price on team chemistry.”
Contact David Schoen at email@example.com or 702-387-5203. Follow @DavidSchoenLVRJ on Twitter.