Fall Sports Preview 2019: Girls’ Golf
Rahul Parikh | Sports Editor
|09/03||New Albany Invitational|
|09/08||Mason Girls Golf Invitational|
|09/10||Lakota West Match|
|09/11||Lakota East Match|
|09/21||St. Angela Merici Invitational|
|09/22||Dublin Jerome Invitational|
Run it back.
The Mason Girls Golf team is looking to repeat as champions in the Greater Miami Conference after recapturing the title from Lakota East last season.
Led by Juniors Catherine Zhang, Jenna Harter, and Maddie Heister along with Sophomore Ally Madden and Freshman Karlie Dillon, the Comets have their eyes set on yet another successful year.
Zhang, already a two-time all GMC first team honoree and current GMC scoring average leader, said that this year the Comets hope to not only repeat as conference champions, but qualify to the state tournament and improve on their finish.
“We definitely think we can win the conference again and go back to state,” Zhang said. “As far as state results go, we finished 7th last year, so hopefully we can qualify and improve on our results there, but we have to take it one step at a time.”
Zhang said in order for the team to have so much success last year, it took concentrated improvement from each member of the team and an overall shift in their mentality.
“The key last year was constant improvement,” Zhang said. “Even improving by that margin helped us lose a lot of strokes and improved our mentality, which is a trait that we absolutely need to carry on this season, along with more consistency.”
Madden, who has started out the season strong with a 38.8 scoring average, said that another key factor this year will be managing and routing the courses that will be played in order to qualify to the state tournament.
“Something that got away from us last year was practicing and understanding the courses for sectionals and districts,” Madden said. “Even if we don’t play our best golf on those days, the knowledge of the course will help us tremendously in getting through the qualifying stages.”
This year’s Comet squad is younger than those of previous campaigns, with no seniors in the top six. Zhang said that the team has, and will continue to overcome the leadership void with stronger internal bonds and more developed relationships.
“Our team is a lot closer to each other this year than we have been in the past,” Zhang said. “It definitely hurts with the seniors leaving, but we know we have a lot of potential and the friendships and personalities within our group are different this season and we’re excited.”
Madden said that Coach Chad Layton’s adjustments to tracking the teams’ rounds have made it easier to focus on areas of improvements so far this year.
“This year Coach Layton created a google sheet to track our round stats, whether it be fairways, greens, putts, or penalty strokes,” Madden said. “This has made it a lot easier for us to figure out where to practice and fine tune our games individually.”
Zhang believes that, simply put, dedication and practice will predicate how far the Comets go this season.
“I think that our work ethic and focus on improvement will determine how close we get to our goals,” Zhang said. “How much we put in will lead us to what we get out of this season.”
Photo by Mia Sweitzer.