The masked members of local high school girls golf teams are making the most of today’s coronavirus climate by taking their best shots on fairways and greens this fall.
The Waterloo High School girls golf team, coached by Jacob Flick, returns nine members from last season and 14 on the team overall.
“Although this season will look slightly different than last with the COVID restrictions, we are all very thankful that we are able to have a season,” Flick said. “I have very high hopes for this group this fall after a great season last year, which was capped off by our team qualifying for sectionals.”
Key returners for the Bulldogs include sophomore Calli Smith, juniors Kami Cooper and Lexi Stumpf, and senior Lidia Kaltenbronn.
Smith led the team in average last season and nearly qualified for state as a freshman.
Cooper and Stumpf “are both very consistent and have the potential to score low on the course,” Flick said.
Kaltenbronn has learned the game quickly, Flick said.
“She has shown that she can score very low and she is also a very consistent scorer,” he said.
Other key returners include Kyleigh Hecht, Payton Link, Peyton Bode, Halle Lynn and Cailee Mudd.
“This will be an exciting season because there will be constant competition from all the girls for spots to travel with the varsity,” Flick said. “This group is great because although they are constantly competing, everyone pulls for each other and wants each other to do well.”
The Bulldogs opened their season with a three-stroke victory Aug. 17 at The Orchards against Mascoutah, shooting a 201.
Smith led Waterloo with a nine-hole score of 46, followed by Cooper at 50.
On Aug. 21, Waterloo placed seventh in the 18-hole Belleville West Invite. Smith again led the way with a 91, followed by Cooper with a 99.
Last Wednesday, the Bulldogs shot a 191 at Belk Park against Marquette, Roxana, Granite City and Jerseyville. Marquette won with a score of 160.
Smith (45) and Kaltenbronn (46) led the Bulldogs.
On Thursday, Waterloo won a match against Belleville West, Freeburg and Red Bud, shooting a 180.
Kaltenbronn tied for the top overall score with a 40, followed by Smith at 44.
On Monday, Waterloo lost by seven strokes to Triad, shooting a 177. Smith placed second overall at 40 and Lynn shot a 44.
The Columbia High School girls golf team opened its season by placing fourth at the Goalby/Haas Classic in O’Fallon on Aug. 20 with a score of 213.
Columbia’s Malia Kossina placed seventh overall at the event with a nine-hole score of 47.
Kossina led the Eagles again at the Belleville West Invite on Aug. 21, placing 18th with an 18-hole score of 90. Columbia placed 12th as a team with a score of 435.
Other golfers for Columbia this fall are Mae Descher, Annie Schrader, Macie Pulcher, Ella Riley, Allison Rachell and Marissa Maldonado.
The Gibault Catholic High School girls golf squad has 10 members this season, which is the most the program has ever had.
Leading the Hawks this season is senior Maliyah Phillips, who qualified for the sectional last year.
Other top players for Gibault this season are senior Kaitlyn Johnson, sophomores Annie Alvarez and Riley Imhoff, and freshmen Lindsay Harget and Libby Mesch.
Gibault opened its season Aug. 17 at Bethalto, shooting a 233 against Roxana and Civic Memorial, who won with a 204. Phillips led the Hawks with a 49, followed by Johnson at 56.
On Aug. 18, Gibault shot a 237 against Chester and Steeleville at Chester Country Club. Chester won with a 219. Phillips led the Hawks with a 46, followed by Alvarez with a 60.
On Aug. 24, Gibault shot a 216 to Granite City’s 197 at Legacy Country Club. Phillips tied for top score overall with a 46, followed by Harget at 53.
On Thursday, Gibault shot a 193 to Okawville’s 185 at Roland Barkau Country Club. Phillips shot a career low 39 to lead all golfers. Alvarez shot a 48 and Imhoff shot a 51.
The Valmeyer High School girls golf team has played in a couple matches this fall.
On Aug. 25, the Pirates shot a 275 at Waterloo. Elizabeth DeLuca shot a 67 and Lillie Roever and Addyson Kimberlin each shot 68 for the Pirates.
On Monday, the Pirates shot a 282 at Waterloo. Roever led Valmeyer with a 64, followed by Ashlyn Berning at 71 and Alexis Smither at 72.
The Dupo High School girls golf team also competed in a couple of matches to start the season.
On Aug. 24, the Tigers shot a 270 at Bethalto against Roxana and Civic Memorial. Abby Francis led the Tigers with a nine-hole score of 49.
On Aug. 25, Dupo shot a 294 at Prairies Golf Club against Father McGivney. Francis again led the Tigers with a nine-hole score of 60.