It’s the end of an era.
After a extremely successful 24-year run, Mike Cardin has decided to retire.
“It was just time to go,” the long-time coach said.
He will be replaced by Scott Maas, associate vice principal at Ottumwa High School. Maas will have some big shoes to fill.
During the Cardin era, the Bulldogs captured seven state championships and qualified for state 18 times.
“I really like working with young people and teaching them the game of life through golf,” Cardin said.
Maas is optimistic about this year’s team — a group consisting of a number of players with a least a year of state experience behind them.
“I think we will be pretty competitive,” Maas said. “We’ve got a couple of solid seniors in Jacob Gardner and Joe Wetrich and we’ve got a couple of solid sophomores in Braxton Coble and Matt Walker.”
Before he became an administrator, Maas played golf at William Penn University in 1988-89. He went on to coach boys and girls golf at Saint Ansgar High School from 1991-96.
He said the Bulldogs will spend a lot of time working on their short games this season: Putting, bunker shots, chipping and pitching.
“There’s a lot of guys who can hit the ball fine, but can’t get the ball in the hole, and we’re going to work on getting the ball in the hole,” Maas said.
The new coach said it’s the mental aspect of golf that has always attracted him to the game.
“It’s all about controlling your emotions and playing against the course,” Maas said. “A lot of it has to do with your mental approach.”
It’s the end of an era.
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