VERONA, Wis. — Marinette is sitting in sixth place and is only 12 shots back of making a run at entering the top three after Day 1 of the WIAA Boys Golf Championships on Monday.

The Marines, led by sophomore Ty Kretz’s 1-under-par round of 71 that put him four shots back of the leader and tied for second with Lakeland Union’s Kyle Bengston, shot 326 on the difficult par-72, 6,477-yard University Ridge Golf Course.

Kretz started on the back nine and was one-under heading into his fifth hole, the 358-yard, par-4 14th hole, where he carded a double-bogey to put him at one over par. He bounced back with three straight birdies on the next three holes to finish off his first nine holes at 2 under par (34).

“I started pretty solid with a par, birdie and a few other pars before I got to No. 14 and four-putted for a double that I really wish I could have back,” Kretz said. “I came back after that with three birdies and a chance for a fourth by missed my six-footer on nine for a 34.”

He birdied hole No.  1 before carding another double-bogey, this time on the 515-yard, par-5 second hole. He followed up the double with five straight pars and ended his round with a birdie on the par-3 17th and a bogey on the par-5 18th to finish the back with a one-over 37.

Never one to feel any pressure, Kretz finished his round with six birdies and nine pars, but knows that his score could have been even lower.

“After I made that second double I wasn’t worried because I knew I was still in it and ended up at one under for the day,” he said. “I’m very happy with my score, but I definitely left a lot of strokes on the course.”

Senior Matt Wagner was able to overcome a tough start that saw him card a double and triple-bogey in his first four holes to sit himself at 5 over par early in the round.

After the triple-bogey at the 316-yard, par-4 13th, he was able to regroup and finish his round shooting 4 over par to end with a total score of 9-over-par 81 (38-43) to be tied for 22nd. Wagner birdied the 169-yard, par-3 fifth.

Senior Wes Knutson birdied the 14th hole to sit him at 1 over par after his first five holes and bogeyed three of the next four to finish his first nine at 4-over. On the back, he started out double-bogey, par, triple-bogey and then finished off the day bogeying five of his final six holes to come in with a score of 86 (46-40) to sit himself tied for 36th.

“After a very good front nine, that double to start the second nine led to me continuing to make big numbers,” Knutson said. “Going into tomorrow, I will make sure that I savor every shot because this is going to be my last time playing competitive golf.”

Senior Chas Ferm and freshman Kelten Hermanson each shot 88s for the Marines to tie for 40th overall. Ferm had one birdie on the par-5 second hole, but also had four double-bogeys on his way to his round of 16 over. Hermanson had seven pars, but also had five double-bogeys and wasn’t able to card anything under par on the day in his round.

Edgewood Sacred Heart is leading after the first day with a total of 305 and Lakeland Union is one shot back in second (306). The third place team, Edgerton, is sitting at 314; Rice Lake is in fourth (317) and Kewaskum is in fifth (321). Edgerton’s Joe Forsting is in the lead after shooting a 5-under-par 67.

In Division 3, Coleman senior Kasey Casper isn’t in the position he would’ve liked after the first day, but can still make a run at the top spot with a good round today.

Casper struggled on the front nine, posting seven bogeys and just two pars for a score of 43. His struggles continued onto the back where through the first six holes he sat at 3 over, but he was finally able to shake it off and finished with three consecutive birdies to shoot even-par on the back and salvage a 7-over-par 79 to lead the Cougars.

Casper’s younger brother, freshman Karson, shot 87 (42-45) with a birdie on the 515-yard, par-5 second hole to finish tied for 22nd for the only other Cougars score in double digits. Junior Conner DeWitt carded a 107, sophomore Dylan Marquardt shot 111 and junior Peyton Deering finished with a 116. 

Coleman is sitting in seventh place with a team score of 384. Roncalli is in first (330), Abundant Life/Madison Country is second (335) and Sheboygan AL rounds out the top three (342).

Division 2 

Team scores: Edgewood Sacred Heart 305, Lakeland Union 306, Edgerton 314, Rice Lake 317, Kewaskum 321, Marinette 326, Winneconne 349, Lake Country Lutheran 353

Marinette: Ty Kretz 37-34 — 71, Matt Wagner 38-43 — 81, Wes Knutson 46-40 — 86, Chas Ferm 46-42 — 88, Kelten Hermanson 44-44 — 88

Division 3

Team scores: Roncalli 330, Abundant Life/Madison Country 335, Sheboygan AL 342, Pacelli 358, Osseo-Fairchild 364, Spring Valley 381, Coleman 384, Luck/Frederic 389

Coleman: Kasey Casper 43-36 — 79, Karson Casper 42-45 — 87, Conner DeWitt 54-53 — 107, Dylan Marquardt 60-51 — 111, Peyton Deering 60-56 — 116