28 Dec

Piper brings golf skills to Canyons

first_img Now at Canyons, Piper has the opportunity to play for a team-oriented coach in Peterson, who has helped the Cougars win 12 Western State Conference Championships and three state championships. For Peterson, Piper still had to prove himself during a 17-round qualifier to make the team and find a spot on the roster, even with a knee injury suffered in September during a racquetball game. “They have to grind it out,” Peterson said of the qualifier. “They have to earn that spot (on the roster). They become less intimidated (during regular season) and they’re able to produce.” Piper produced a third-place finish in his first tournament, the Bakersfield Invitation, with rounds of 74 and 73 in a field involving more than 20 schools. Teammate David Cape took first (72-70) and teammate Joe Greiner took second (73-72) to help Canyons win the tournament. “He’s been playing golf for a long time at a heightened competitive level,” Peterson said. “It was only a matter of time before he bloomed.” Piper is making the high school-to-college transition look easy with his third-place finish and isn’t concerned with his opponents or teammates challenging his score card. “As long as we win,” Piper said. “I don’t care. That’s all we care about.” Piper plans to carry his game to the next level at Division I and is always trying to improve. Currently, Piper is focusing on his putting and isn’t too concerned with his drive, which ranges from 280 to 320 yards, according to Peterson. “Most kids can get on in regulation,” Peterson said. “When (Piper’s) putting came around, he shot right up the ladder.” McDermott had not doubt. “He keeps players on their toes,” McDermott said. “He’s a great player for a team. The coach will like him over there.” Nate Brown, (818) 713-3607 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! When Casey Piper was a freshman at Simi Valley High, he had a decision to make. Should he play baseball or golf? Piper, now a freshmen at College of the Canyons in Valencia, chose golf – to the delight of Simi Valley golf coach Ty McDermott and current Canyons coach Gary Peterson. “He is really a talent,” McDermott said of Piper. “He got into it (golf), took a few lessons, fell into it and that was it.” AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESanta Anita opens winter meet Saturday with loaded card “In golf,” said Piper, “you control what you do, not the coaches. You control your playing time.” Piper then proceeded to rip up the Marmonte League for the next four years, earning Rookie of the Year as a freshman, first-team All-Marmonte three years and MVP his junior and senior year. However, in a game that rewards individual performance, Piper’s experience in other sports have helped him carry team competitiveness to Simi Valley and Canyons. Piper, now 6 foot 3 and 225 pounds, played baseball for 10 years at catcher and third base before getting serious about golf. Piper also played competitive hockey and basketball. “He’s such a good-natured team player,” McDermott said. “The other players really rallied around him.” last_img

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