that have gone to state the past three sea
that have gone to state the past three seasons, she qualified for state golf last year as individual, placing 30th out of a field of 58. This time, she’ll be joined by her teammates.
“This is really fun,” she said. “It seems like the community is acknowledging it really well. It’ll be more comforting knowing the whole team is there.”
The Hawks flew under the radar this season, not once cracking the top 15 teams in the Iowa Coaches rankings. They didn’t have anyone crack the top 40 individuals, either, despite Rolffs’ state finish last year.
“I don’t think any of us have paid any attention to the ratings,” Rolffs said. “It’s good that we still got there with hard work at practice.”
“I wasn’t expecting us to have as low of scores as we have,” Beyer added. “Maybe we were underestimated, but I underestimated us, too.”
Lynnville-Sully took second at the South Iowa Cedar League conference tournament on May 10, won districts at its home course of Diamond Trail Golf Club in Lynnville, and was the runner-up at regionals to No. 2-ranked Hardwick-Ladora-Victor.
The Hawks also showed this season that they could play well against bigger competition. They won a triangular over 3A Pella and 2A Pella Christian on May 1, and then took third in the Cardinal Invite at Newton’s Westwood Golf Course on May 4. That meet included three 4A schools, three from 3A and two from 2A — including Prairie-City-Monroe. Lynnville-Sully was the only 1A school in the nine-team field.
“Playing some of the other tournaments like in Pella and Newton and being successful there, I knew the girls would do well,” Rozendaal said.
Another fact that makes the Hawks’ season all the-more impressive is that they’ve done it with just five golfers: Rolffs, Beyer, sophomore Macey Lanser, senior Cierra Stafford and freshman Haley Hood. Teams are allotted six varsity golfers at each meet, of which the top four scores contribute to the overall varsity score.
“It doesn’t make me too nervous, because all five of the girls are very similar in their abilities and how they score,” Rozendaal said. “It’s usually one-to-two strokes difference. I can pretty much rely on Aimee, Kelsey and Macey for the top three, and then it depends on Cierra and Haley for their day.”
“I think we know that anyone can bring in that fourth score, and anyone can be out of it,” Rolffs added. “It just depends on who’s having a good day, and if someone’s having a bad day we know that someone can pull through for us.”
It’s been a hectic week for Stafford, who also is on the Hawks’ softball team, which is three games into its season. She missed the team’s first game on Monday as she had the district golf meet. She played in Wednesday night’s game, hitting a double and scoring a run. She missed Thursday’s game as the golf team had a practice round at Adel.
At state, Lynnville-Sully will be up against some of the perrennial 1A golf powers. It will see defending champion Bishop Garrigan, which had the top regional score of the eight qualifiers. It also won titles in 2007, 2009 and took second in 2010. It was state by 62 strokes last year. HLV will be there, as will No. 3 Hinton, which was runner-up in 2007, 2008 and last year. Fifth-ranked Grundy Center won titles in 2008 and 2010, while No. 6 Valley Community and No. 7 Audubon are also in the mix.
While the Hawks certainly have their work cut out for them in order for a top-five finish, that won’t be their focus heading into Tuesday.
“I just told the girls that we’ve made it, and that’s our accomplishment,” Rozendaal said. “So now we’re just going to go out and have fun.”