Fore! ... er, Four! Minnewaska wins fourth straight state title
JORDAN -- It's not supposed to be this easy. This wasn't just a meet with some neighboring schools competing. Nor was it even the best teams in the section knocking heads on the golf course. This was the state meet. But instead of an intense competition, it was more like seven small children trying to wrestle Hulk Hogan.
Winning by an astonishing 67 strokes at Ridges at Sand Creek Golf Course, Minnewaska Area captured a fourth straight state title Thursday, two in Class A and now two in Class AA with just one senior in the lineup. The Lakers finished with a 304-306--610, while Red Wing was second with 345-332--677. Crookston placed third with 353-366--719.
The lone senior, Emily Roering, was individual state champion after finishing third last season. Roering shot par-72, including a 34 on the back nine for the second straight day, and finished with a two-day total of 146 to beat her junior teammate Allie Ostrander by two strokes. Junior Sarah Roering, the defending Class AA state champion and Emily's sister, finished fourth with a 151. Ostrander shot 73 on the second day and Sarah Roering carded a 75.
"We got a little lucky with the team we have," said Emily Roering. "To have this many good golfers all on the same team is amazing. But we've all worked very hard to get to this point, to be honest."
Minnewaska established its dominance early, bolting to a 41-shot lead after the first day. And someone was supposed to rally back from that deficit?
"I would be willing to bet that we spend more time practicing than any of the other teams," said Emily, who will attend Colorado State next fall on a golf scholarship. "We're on the course almost every day in the summer, either practicing or playing."
There have been dominating teams in the history of Minnesota high school sports. But few can boast such a dominating dynasty as the Lakers. They won by 51 strokes last spring and had onlookers shaking their heads like it was bobblehead night at the Metrodome over the ease of staking claim to the title. Now a 67-shot margin.
Brianna Janu, a freshman, and Sam Falk, a sophomore, tied for 17th place. Falk shot 86 and Janu 90 on the second day and each finished a 169. Eighth-grader Alex Guggisberg shot 201.
But this was Emily Roering's day. After finishing her basketball career with 998 points, fouling out of her final game while going in for a layup that would have given her 1,000 points, Roering got revenge on Lady Luck.
"I really wanted this bad," she admitted. "Being my last year and all, I wanted to go out winning. But I said to myself that if I don't win, it won't change my life. And if I do win, it won't change my life."
Maybe not. But the smile on her face says otherwise.
Roering said she was unhappy with her front-nine scores each day of 40 and 38. But getting a birdie on No. 10 each day also gave her a spark.
"After getting those birdies, I just told myself to keep going because you never know what the others are doing. I just got in a zone and wasn't thinking about anything else."
Among the other Class AA girls' individuals, Abby Fragodt of Benson/KMS tied for 34th with a 178, Katlyn Kiehn of Litchfield was tied for 46th with 183, Kalli Swanson of Litchfield tied for 56th with 191, and Lauren Alsaker of Benson/KMS tied for 62nd with a 195.
Peters ties for 9th in Class AA boys
Pierce Peters, a senior from Minnewaska Area, tied for ninth individually in the Class AA boys competition. Peters shot 78-75-153 to tie two others.
Mark Giorgi of Red Wing was the medalist with a 145.
Orono won the team title with a 607, 11 shots ahead of runner-up Hermantown.
Chris Tobkin of New London-Spicer finished in a seven-way tie for 12th place after carding a 154.
Andrew Whitchuch of Litchfield tied for 19th with 155, Tyler Jensvold of Yellow Medicine East was tied for 32nd with 158, Taylor Olson of Yellow Medicine East tied for 45th with 161 and Ryan Bergh of New London-Spicer tied for 49th with 163.
Hauser ties for 10th in Class A
MACCRAY sophomore Zach Hauser tied for 10th Thursday in Class A at Pebble Creek in Becker, shooting 77-81-158.
Dillon Schultz of Springfield/Comfrey was the individual champion with a 144. Rushford-Peterson won the team title by five strokes over Hawley.
Tyler Erickson of Dawson-Boyd tied for 56th with 180 and Justin Wassink of MACCRAY shot 187 to tied for 74th.
Kienitz 17th in Class A girls
Trisha Kienitz, a junior from MACCRAY, topped the area Class A field with a 17th-place finish at Pebble Creek in Becker. Kienitz shot 98-88-186.
Whitney Bertram of Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa tied for 24th with a 192 and Ivy Schueller of Dawson-Boyd was tied for 59th with 213.
Class AA girls
(Top 10, plus area results)
1. Emily Roering, Minnewaska......74-72-146
2. Allie Ostrander, Minnewaska.....75-73-148
3. Cydney Hasselberg, Staples-Mot.73-77-150
4. Sarah Roering, Minnewaska.......76-75-151
5. Anna Laorr, Breck.....................79-79-158
6. Jordan Price, Byron...................82-78-160
7. Kourtney Williams, Becker.........83-78-161
8. Alyssa Kalthoff, Albany..............80-84-164
Cassie Norton, Waconia..............85-79-164
Danielle Brooks, Red Wing.........85-79-164
17. Brianna Janu, Minnewaska........79-90-169
17. Sam Falk, Minnewaska.............83-86-169
34. Abby Fragodt, Benson/KMS.......92-86-178
46. Katlyn Kiehn, Litchfield............87-96-183
56. Kalli Swanson, Litchfield...........94-97-191
62. Lauren Alsaker, Benson/KMS...95-100-195
72. Alex Guggisberg, Minnewaska..97-104-201
Class AA boys
(Champion, plus area results)
1. Mark Giorgi, Red Wing..............71-74-145
9. Pierce Peters, Minnewaska........78-75-153
12. Chris Tobkin, NL-Spicer............73-77-150
19. Andrew Whitchurch, Litchfield..77-78-155
32. Tyler Jensvold, YME................82-76-158
45. Taylor Olson, YME...................78-83-161
49. Ryan Bergh, NL-Spicer..............80-83-163
Class A boys
(Champion, plus area results)
1. Dillon Schultz, Springfield..........74-70-144
10. Zach Hauser, MACCRAY...........77-81-158
56. Tyler Erickson, Dawson-Boyd....94-86-180
74. Justin Wassink, MACCRAY........92-95-187
Class A girls
(Champion, plus area results)
1. Anna Tarazona, Madelia............77-77-154
17. Trisha Kienitz, MACCRAY........98-88-186
24. Whitney Bertram, BBE.............96-96-192
74. Ivy Schueller, Dawson-Boyd...106-107-213