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Sports

Glacier High School Hires New Golf Coach

Jim Ness will take over a Wolfpack program aiming to defend its state championship

By Micah Drew
Glacier High School on Jan. 3, 2024. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon

Glacier High School has selected Jim Ness as the next head golf coach for the Wolfpack, the school announced Tuesday. His hiring will not become official until the Kalispell Public Schools board approves it.

“Jim brings an incredible understanding of leadership and community connectedness to our coaching staff,” Glacier activities director Mark Dennehy said in a press release. “His professionalism and ability to communicate will serve him well as he leads boys and girls golf programs.”

Ness will take over a Wolfpack program that seen the boys team become a powerhouse in the state in recent years. The Wolfpack have finished on the podium at each of the last four Class AA state tournaments, finishing third in 2020 followed by back-to-back runner up finishes before capturing the title outright last fall.

Sam Engellant of Glacier High School golf pictured in Kalispell on Nov. 27, 2023. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon

A Glacier golfer has been in a playoff for the individual crown each of the last two years. Current junior Sam Engellent will be the top returning golfer this fall, leading a returning squad of players that have eyes on another title.

“All four of us are really top players in the state and we’re looking strong to go back-to-back,” junior Tanyon Murray told the Beacon following the team’s championship last fall. “Sentinel and some of the other top schools all lost core players and we kept everyone. But the level of golf in the state is so high we know that Sentinel and others will be with us in every tournament. But we’re looking very strong, and we already know we want it again.”

Glacier’s girls team finished fifth in the 2023 state tournament.

Ness has long been prominent in Montana’s golf scene, previously helping Glacier Bank win the Governors’ Cup Golf Tournament in 2018 and taking a top-10 finish in the 2022 Flathead Beacon Pro Scratch. He replaces Chris Michno, who spent two seasons as head coach.

“We will certainly miss the great work from our past coach, Chris Michno, who led the boys team to a state championship this past year,” Dennehy said. “Chris’s expertise and genuine care for people will be missed.”