The last Junior Golf tourney of the season

Rain, lightning and thunder took the center stage from a record performance by golfer Austen Ancell, stealing his thunder as he won the overall two-day tournament.

The rain that delayed the tournament at Mountain Falls Golf Course started at 1 p.m. on Wednesday for an hour after the golfers had finished six holes. It was almost canceled due to heavy persistent rains at times and lightning, which threatened to stay around.

Despite the heavy downpours and some visible lightning strikes in the nearby Spring Mountains, the rains subsided and play resumed at 3 p.m. The tournament had no problems on Tuesday, the first day.

Fifteen junior golfers braved the rain and heat at the two-day 17th annual Gene Goins Memorial Golf Tournament at Mountain Falls.

The Goins tournament was the final Pahrump Valley Junior Golf Association tournament of the season.

The high school boys division was won by Austen Ancell, who not only was the best golfer of the day in his last Pahrump Valley Junior Golf Tournament, but he broke a Junior Golf record with his 12-under-par 132. According to Larry Goins, president of the Pahrump Valley Youth Golfers Founders Club, who sponsors the tournament, Ancell broke the record, which was 3-under-par.

“I am sure I will have to check, but I think that is the best score ever for Junior Golf and in this tournament,” Goins said.

A great way to finish a great high school career

Boy, what a great way to go out. Ancell shot eight birdies on the first day and six on the second day (a birdie is one under par), shooting a 7-under-par 65 the first day and a 5-under-par 67 the second day. It was his best score ever at Mountain Falls.

“My putting felt really good and I was making all the short putts,” Ancell said. “I think I can finally say I have beaten this course. It feels good. I definitely can say I have a feel for this course.”

After this, Ancell has a few other tournaments to do before he leaves town for Regis College in Colorado at the end of the month, where he will attend the school on a golf scholarship.

“He wasn’t going to play in this tournament,” Ryan Ancell, his dad, said. “I told him go out with a bang and put your name on the leader board. He could play next year too, but I think we will let others win some trophies, so this one is probably his last.”

Parents love Pahrump Valley Junior Golf

Ian Zuniga has two kids playing the game of golf.

“This is a great activity for them to keep busy after school,” Zuniga said. “I had them play golf to teach them discipline, and patience. Both my kids have been playing since they were 6-years-old. My kids enjoy the competition and the camaraderie. It’s a good release for kids with a lot of energy.”

Who was Gene Goins

“Gene Goins was a man who never stepped onto the golf course,” Larry Goins, his son, said. “But he always purchased a paper to follow his grandson Chad Goins in the sports page and when he passed away some 20 years ago our family donated money to this tournament.”

Contact sports editor Vern Hee at