PELLA — In one of their biggest meets of the year, the Newton girls golf team showed its grit, consistency and most notably its depth on Monday with a second place finish at Bos Landen Golf Course in Pella.
The Cards shot a combined 418 in the 18-hole meet, placing them behind conference powerhouse Grinnell (375) and in front of Norwalk (423) who had just beaten the Cards in a meet last week by shooting a team record.
“The big thing that helped us get past Norwalk was our depth,” Newton coach Scott Enyart said. “We have a team where any girl can go low on any given day, and that really takes the pressure off the girls because nobody feels like they have a responsibility to always be their best.”
The six Newton girls each had highlights at one point or another in the round, and all of their scores hovered around the mid 100s, with Shelby Cochran shooting a team-low of 100. Cochran had a very consistent round. Cochran’s round featured a birdie on the par-3 sixth. She hit the ball about 10 feet above the hole. Then she drilled a downhill putt to secure the birdie. She also parred 16.
Second on the team was Carrie Cunningham, who shot a 104. Cunningham hit the ball very solidly all day. Her round was highlighted by a birdie on hole two and a par on the 15th. The next lowest Cardinal score was 107, shot by both Madeline Wellik and Madigan Hillyard. Hillyard showed resiliency on the par-3 third when her tee shot went over the green. She was able to get the ball up and two-putt to save bogey. She also parred her first hole of the day, number 16. Wellik had three pars in her round on holes three, 10 and 11.
Jessica Reynolds and Bailey Kellogg were the two Cardinal scores left off the team’s score. They shot 112 and 110, respectively.
It was a challenging golf course, lined with trees and full of hazards, but as coach Enyart suggests, the girls were able to battle through for some good scores and avenge a tough loss to Norwalk last week.
“It was a very tough course, very difficult to score,” Enyart said. “The girls were really able to persevere through adversity. None of them let a bad hole bother them. They kept their composure very well. This is probably the most challenging course we’ll play all year, and they all played really solid golf. Our work on the short game has paid off. I’m very proud of them.”
In addition to the team finishing second, Cochran and Cunningham’s efforts earned both of them all-conference honors for the season.
The Cardinals next meet will be in Newton on Friday.