1A Girls Golf Sectional
PONTIAC — It was a frustrating day for many of the golfers at the 1A Girls Golf Sectional at the Pontiac Elks Lodge Course, probably no more so than for the teams of Princeton and Putnam County and four golfers from St. Bede as their postseason play ended on Monday.
It was nearly as windy as the week before at the Galva Regional, the fairways were longer and narrower, and the ground was on the soggy side, allowing less bounce on the drives and roll on the greens.
The conditions were enough of a factor that only three players had scores under 80, beginning with the day’s individual medalist Ali Schrock of the host Indians, who led all golfers with a round of 72.
Only one area golfer, Riley Hansen of Neponset (playing for Kewanee), will be advancing to state after carding a round of 84, placing eighth in the top 10. She was the state runner-up a year ago.
“The course was a lot longer than what we played at the regional, so I expected a little higher score today,” Hansen said. “The wind was blowing a little hard and it was wet, so it had an effect on some shots and scores.
“I felt like my game was a little bit more sloppy than I would’ve liked, but overall I’m happy I qualified for state,” she said.
Princeton finished seventh with a tally of 421, led by senior Adrienne Snethen’s 98, along with Kelli VanDenBussche’s 101 and Izzy Hall’s 110. Olivia Eiken finished the day with a round of 112, followed by Emily Hartman (118) and Jade Loftus (124).
“It was a challenging course on a challenging day,” PHS coach Will Gross said. “But overall, I was satisfied with the heart we presented out there.
“Sad and disappointed that our season’s over, but the girls can hold their heads up high. They worked hard, gave it all they had, it just didn’t go our way today.”
However, there were plenty of reminders of how successful this season was for the Tigresses.
“We’ve gone to sectional as a team five out of the last seven years, our three seniors were first team all conference this year, led us to a conference championship (first in school history), and set the 18-hole school record,” Gross said. “What can you say? They accomplished every single goal they set their mind to, except getting out of this sectional.”
For St. Bede’s golfers, who played individually, Gianna Elias tied for 43rd place with a round of 103, while Aleanna Mendoza tied for 55th with a score of 108. Abbie May tied for 83rd place (120), and Alyssa Heitz tied at 105th place with a 140.
Putnam County placed sixth with a score of 407, led by Rylee Liles with a 97, followed by Kelli Kennedy (102), Ali Ciucci (103), and Madison Keegan (105).
“We had a little bit of a rough go today,” PC coach Chelsi Straughn said. “They definitely came out and shot a little higher than they were hoping to, but all the (tournament) scores were elevated. I was surprised at the (other) scores that were coming in.”
Bloomington Central Catholic led the three advancing teams with a combined score of 349, followed by Geneseo (376), and Metamora (382).