|Bearcat girls golf opens with big win|
|August 27, 2015 Jerry Purvis|
The Scottsbluff girls’ golf team, last year’s Class B state champs, continued to play in top form last Thursday and Friday, capturing first place in the Cheyenne Invitational at the Airport Golf Club.
The two-day total for the Bearcats was 514, three shots ahead of runner-up Sheridan. Laramie finished in third.
Leading the way for Scottsbluff was Hannah Holloway, who carded rounds of 81 and 80 for a two-day total of 161. Teammate Shelby Poyner was three strokes back at 164. Other finishers for the Bearcats were Karlie Johnson in 12th with 189, Rachel Hancock in 21st with 206, and Jordan Hoxworth was one stroke back at 207 for a 22nd place finish.
Scottsbluff Head Coach Mike Klein said he didn’t know what to expect for the first tournament of the season. “I knew the girls who played in 25 tournaments this summer would do fine, and the others, on one of those two days, shot their best scores ever. That was encouraging.”
He added that Karlie Johnson has improved a lot from last season carding scores of 93 and 96 at Cheyenne. “That’s a pretty hard golf course and the weather was really windy. I’m enthused with how well she did.”
Klein said the first two weeks, the team just hit balls and they were ready to get into an actual tournament. “The team’s improving fast and once we get into tournaments they should hopefully get their scores down even more.”
Klein also pointed out Hannah Holloway and Shelby Poynter as solid players. Poynter is only in her second year of playing golf. As for Holloway, if it weren’t for a couple of bad breaks in the middle of the rounds, she probably would have carded a final round of about 75.
“This season is a process that takes time,” Klein said. “There are a couple of good teams back east, so we have to get our scores lower. The girls are talented, so there’s no reason we can’t. They just need to play more.”
The opening week is a busy one with meets on Tuesday at Sidney, Thursday with the JV squad at the Bayard Invitational and the Western Conference Meet on Saturday at Sidney.
Gering finished in seventh place at Cheyenne with a team score of 614. The Bulldogs were led by Jasie Beam, who finished in 13th placed with rounds of 90 and 102 for a 192 total. Her first round of 90 was the lowest she’s scored in a tournament.
Other finishers had DJ Bokelman at 24th with 209, Bailey Kreider in 28th with 213, Hassie Hood in 39th with 234 and Megan Maser in 41st with 238.
“Most of the team improved from day one to day two,” Head Coach Jessica Boswell said. “We have a young team, so we needed the experience of a tournament. Now I have a baseline on what to work on as the season goes forward.”
She said the team will be working on their putting. “The greens at Cheyenne are a lot faster than at Gering and they told me that’s what they needed to work on.”
The team will also spend more time familiarizing themselves what distance their clubs will go. “To be effective, you have to make smart decisions,” she said. “You don’t always have to tee off with a driver.”
Gering will be in Sidney twice this week. Tuesday is the Sidney Invite and the Western Conference Meet is on Saturday.