Somerset golfers think this is their year to move up in Middle Border ConferenceWith four senior letter winners returning to the team, there is a sense of optimism around the Somerset girls golf team to start the 2011 season.
By: Dave Newman, New Richmond News
With four senior letter winners returning to the team, there is a sense of optimism around the Somerset girls golf team to start the 2011 season.
Long-time Spartan coach Bill Powers isn’t someone prone to making bold statements about his team. He changed his ways for this team.
“We might be the second best team in the conference,” Powers projected.
The Spartans return three of the top 18 players in the Middle Border Conference from last season. Sammi Wolff ranked 11th in conference points last season, Carley Seibel ranked 14th and Andrea Passe ranked 18th. New Richmond is the only other MBC team with that many top players returning from last season.
The Spartans can build around those seniors and classmate Haylee McMahon, who returns to the team after not playing during her junior season. She was a letter winner as a sophomore, when she was one of the team’s top players.
This isn’t going to be a one-year bubble of success for the Spartans. Powers said there is a quality group of freshmen and sophomores who should keep the program competitive for the foreseeable future. The balance on the team is unique. There are 16 girls on the team’s roster, including four from each high school class.
Leading the group of younger players is freshman Stacie Bracht. Powers said Seibel, Wolff, Bracht and McMahon give the Spartans four top flight varsity players to begin the season. There is plenty of competition for the fifth varsity spot, with Passe, Sam Swanson, Cassie Peterson and the four sophomores on the roster all in contention.
“We’ve got 10 or 11 girls who could possibly play varsity golf,” Powers said. “It’s different than in the past. The new girls have some golf experience.”
Powers said New Richmond and Osceola will be the Spartans’ main competition at the top of the conference. Osceola returns defending WIAA state champion Casey Danielson and New Richmond returns four players who ranked among the top seven players in the MBC last season.