Henry Kosmicki had never made a hole-in-one in his life.
That is, until the Grand Island Cup tournament Monday at Riverside Golf Course.
The Grand Island Senior High junior sank a hole-in-one on the par-3 14th hole. That helped Grand Island Senior High claimed the cup for the first time since 2017.
“That was very exciting, especially since it was my first one,” he said.
Golfing in groups of three, whoever won each hole was awarded five points. Second place earned three points and third got one. If the top two are tied, first and second each were awarded four points with third getting one. If there’s a tie for second, the last two were both rewarded two points while the first got five. Each golfer received three points if they all shot the same score on a hole.
Kosmicki was the high scorer as he won the event with a 75. If the cup was scored like a normal tournament he would have had the lowest score with a 72.
The Islanders claimed the cup with 390, while GICC was second with a 309 and Northwest took third with a 273.
Kosmicki said he was a little surprised to get a hole-in-one as he didn’t see where the ball landed.
“I’ve been hitting my distances a little more all day so I thought the ball was going to be long when I hit it off the tee,” he said. “But it went straight for it. One of the dads said it took a two hop then rolled right in. Everyone around the hole was just going crazy. That was fun.”
GISH coach James Kuebler said it was good to see Kosmicki do that.
“That was an outstanding time for him to do that when the pressure is on you. I know he’s walking on air right now,” he said. “That’s got to give him some confidence going into districts.”
As for the Islanders, teammate Bode Albers was second with a 71 match score, Prestin Vilai was third with a 67 and Ayden Kenkel was fourth with a 65. Jared Lehechka fired a 59 and Marcus Holling fired a 53. Holling was third with a 78 under a normal tournament score.
Kuebler said it was a good day for the Islanders and he was happy they were able to win the cup.
“We had high expectations because it’s our home course and it was great conditions to golf in,” Kuebler said. “For the most part, we lived up to those expectations, even though some kids are disappointed with how they played today. But that’s a good thing, because when they are still hungry and know there are still shots to be made up, that tells you that they are still pushing to get better.”
Jackson Henry led the Crusaders with a 60, while Bowdie Fox was second with a 58, and Will Goering and Joey Koralewski each fired a 57. Jonathan Schardt shot a 41 and Jared Palik carded a 36. Under a normal tournament score, Goering was second with a 76, while Fox was fifth with an 82.
GICC coach Craig Rupp said he was happy with what he saw from the Crusaders.
“I think Grand Island might be one of the top three teams in Class A,” he said. “They are very good. I thought going in we were playing for second today. But I was pleased and told the kids to have fun and don’t be concerned with what you shot. It was all about strategy. Will had a great day and Bowdie is starting to come around as everyone else is too.”
Kanyon Shada led Northwest with a 62 match-play score, while Joey Holling had a 52 with a normal-tournament score of 79, which was good enough for fourth. Johnny Bangs fired a 59 match score, while Damon Bennett fired a 37, Jared Dramse shot a 34 and Caleb Alcorta shot a 29.
“This is a course where a lot of our guys have never played before and it showed a little bit,” Viking coach Alex Hull said. “It’s a fun deal and we’re going to grow and learn from it.
“But Joey had a good day to shoot a 79 on a tough course. He was ready for today and it showed. And we felt real good with Kanyon in the match play position as he plays out here a lot and he told me he was ready to play.”
Kosmicki said he was excited that everyone was out competing in the G.I. Cup for the first time since 2018. The event was rained out in 2019 and the COVID-19 pandemic canceled the entire high school golf season last year.
One highlight included cousins Marcus and Joey Holling getting paired together in a group.
“It was disappointing that we didn’t have it my freshman year when it got rained out as well as last year as well. This is fun to compete in with the other city players,” Kosmicki said. “Overall, we had a good day, even though we could do better. But it was nice that we were able to win it.”
GICC and Northwest will compete in the Tri-City Invitational at Jackrabbit Run Golf Course Tuesday, while Grand Island heads to the Norfolk Invite Friday.