Competition within team pushes New Richmond girls golfers toward title
While the New Richmond girls golf team hasn’t been beaten in a Middle Border Conference match this season, the Tigers aren’t showing any signs of complacency.
In fact, it’s quite the opposite, according to Tiger coach Neal Ziller.
The top three girls in the lineup, Maddie McCann, Maggie Veenendall and Mallorie Brinkman, are all working to improve as they try to earn first team all-conference honors.
The fourth and fifth spots in the varsity lineup are a weekly battle. Last week, Miah Olson and Ashley Swiggum won those spots. This week, Beth Duncan and Liz Towberman earned those spots.
“All four girls are working really hard to improve and get things straightened out,” Ziller said. “They’ve pushed each other. That’s made our team improve.”
McCann and Veenendall led the Tigers in last Monday’s win at Ellsworth by shooting 44. Ziller praised Brinkman for battling through a couple of tough holes to come back with a 48. Olson shot 55 and Swiggum 61.
St. Croix Central
St. Croix Central senior Emma Landry earned medalist honors for the first time in her career in last week’s match at Ellsworth. In fact, it’s the first time Landry finished in the top two in a meet. She tied Osceola’s Anna Uzpen, who is the conference’s leading scorer, for medalist honors at Ellsworth, with both girls shooting 43.
Landry’s been third or fourth in seemingly every match lately. Central coach Chance Langeness said this is another sign in the upward trajectory of Landry’s game.
“In her last five or six scores, she’s 10 strokes better than the beginning of the year,” Langeness said.
With Landry leading the way, the Panthers continued to run in third place in the conference. Hailey Schultz finished at 53, Sarah Phillips at 55 and Carolyn Morris at 57 as the Panthers finished at 208.
Phillips has made a big improvement in scores in recent matches. That has helped the team remain consistent in its scoring, with Audra Scott battling a shoulder injury that has raised her scores.
The Spartans produced their best finish of the season at Ellsworth. They finished with a season-best team score of 229. That helped them to take sixth place in the match, which moves them up into a tie for sixth place with Prescott in the overall MBC team standings.
Senior Ally Wittstock has her game moving forward. She tied for fifth in the match by shooting a 48. Wittstock has been working to improve her powerful drives, trading a few yards in distance for improved accuracy. Wittstock has also been improving her putting, not needing more than two puts on any hole in this match.
Emma Westmoreland and Cally Meixner finished at 57 and 58. Shelly Varga gave the Spartans an improved fourth score, shooting 66, to help bring the team’s score to its lowest level.
The rainout of last Thursday’s match made this an even more important week for the MBC golfers. Last Thursday’s meet was moved to Monday at Osceola. The final nine-hole match of the conference season was scheduled for Tuesday at Somerset. And this Thursday will be the 18-hole conference championship tournament, which will be played at Pheasant Hills Golf Club outside Hammond.