BECKER - In the sport of golf, consistency can go a long way.
The Sleepy Eye girls saw just that on Wednesday at the Class A State tournament at Pebble Creek. The Indians entered the second day in fourth place with a team score of 380 and on Wednesday and they managed a repeat performance with another 380.
That helped the Indians to finish the two-day event with a score of 760 and they managed to move up a spot to finish third overall in the team event.
Staff photos by Steve Muscatello
Buffalo Lake-Hector-Stewart’s Carly Schmalz (above) and Sleepy Eye St. Mary’s Mikail Sellner (below) compete at the Class A State Golf Tournament Tuesday.
Lewiston-Altura won the event with a 709 and Lincoln HI was second with a 724. Sleepy Eye (760), Legacy Christian Academy (765), Fosston (768), Ortonville (773), Mesabi East (868) and Barnesville (906) rounded out the competition.
"We played really solid both days, and it's been our season-long goal all season to finish on the podium at the state tournament and we accomplished that," Sleepy Eye coach Kaleb Walter said.
Walter thought his team was more comfortable on the second day.
"We did get off to a little better start today," he said.?"We didn't have any big numbers on the tougher holes. I think they were a little more relaxed today than they were on Day 1."
Leading the way for the Indians was Emily Curtis, who finished 25th overall with a 183. She shot an 85 on the second day, an improvement from her 98 on the first day.
There wasn't a lot of separation between the Indians at third place and Fosston at fifth place (eight strokes total), so every score was big for the Indians.
"That was huge, we ended up needing every stroke," Walter said. "We ended up winning by five shots [over Legacy Christian Academy] so that was great."
Carissa Hillmer finished with a 98 on the second day for a two-day total of 191 and Karrah Remus (97, 193) and Lauren Laffen (100, 193) rounded out the top four for the Indians.
Anna Ibberson shot a 109 on the second day to finish the meet with a 212 and Aileen Roman shot a 113 for a two-day score of 227.
While the Indians were happy with their strong finish, one area individual wasn't too happy with the way things turned out.
Buffalo Lake-Hector-Stewart's Carly Schmalz completed her second day at the tournament with a 93. She entered Wednesday's play in a four-way tie for first place, but she ended the tournament in 13th place.
"I'm very disappointed in the way I?played," Schmalz said.?"My strong suit today was my driving, but I couldn't hit a green on my approach shots to save my life. I struggled with everything other than driving."
For Schmalz, it was just one of those days where everything seemed to go wrong. She knew right away she was in trouble.
"Right away I noticed it," she said. "I started to lose my confidence and really hurt my game also."
Still, Schmalz can't hang her head in disappointment too much. She did, after all, finish in the top 15 in the state as a junior.
It's one of those things she never would've believed if someone would've told her ahead of time that she would be a top 15 performer.
"I wouldn't have believed it, never would've thought about it," she said of the finish at state.
Madelia's Jordan Henry was one of two area qualifiers for the state meet on the boy's side. He had a strong finish on the second day, finishing 11th overall.
Henry was tied for 21st going into the day with a first-day score of 81. The freshman shot a 77 on the second day to move up 10 spots on the leaderboard and finished with a two-day score of 158.
Sleepy Eye St. Mary's senior Mikail Sellner was tied with Henry at 21st going into Wednesday's action. However, he didn't enjoy the same climb up the leaderboard, finishing with an 85 and a two-day score of 166, which tied him for 33rd overall.
Legacy Christian Academy won the team event with a 645, followed by Wabasha-Kellogg (663), Dawson-Boyd 667), Murray County Central (668), United South Central (671), Mahnomen (674), Mille Lacs (675), Fosston (685).
Martin County West's Cordell Weber won the individual meet with a 144 and Northeast Range's Sam Eisenhuth shot a 145.