While two-time NewsTribune Girls Golfer of the Year Aleana Mendoza has graduated, there still is plenty of talent in the area.
Four of the six golfers selected to the NewsTribune All-Area Team are back and looking to fill the void left by Mendoza.
Coach: Patrick Goy
Top returning players: Avah Moriarty, Sr.; Megan McGuire, Sr.; Maddie VanZuiden, Jr.; Allie Thome, So.
Top newcomers: Makenna Zimmer, So.
Worth noting: Despite losing four seniors, the Cavaliers have a solid core returning in Moriarty (52 average last season), McGuire (57) and Thome (52). “Avah, Megan and Allie all played at the varsity level last season and all had success at different points,” Goy said. “Avah played a lot this summer and she will be looked at as a leader and someone we can relay on from match to match to post a good score. Allie also played a decent amount thissummer and is returning off a strong freshman season. She posted a 95 at the regional. She ended the season on a strong note and we will look for her to be a consistent contributor to our team score. Megan has played since her freshman year and I’m looking forward to watching her compete and finish out her L-P career with a strong season.” Goy said he expects the team to be competitive and said Moriarty and Thome have a chance at postseason success after almost qualifying for sectional last year. VanZuiden (65) and Zimmer also played last season, while sophomore Albiona Useini and freshmen Haley Maltas and Gracie VanZuiden join the roster.
Coach: Rich Cummings
Top returning players: Gianna Grivetti, Sr.; Petranella Mitchell, Sr.
Top newcomers: Erin Dove, Jr.
Worth noting: The Bruins lost two seniors to graduation, including two-time NewsTribune Girsl Golfer of the Year Aleanna Mendoza, and another varsity player to a move to Florida, so St. Bede will be young this season. Grivetti has been a staple on the varsity throughout her career and was the Bruins’ No. 2 golfer last season when had the second-best average in the area (46), earned all-area and helped St. Bede advance to the sectional as a team. Dove is a transfer from Princeton who had to sit out last season but was able to practice with the Bruins. She played at PHS as a freshman. Mitchell was new to the sport last fall. “We’re going to be young and kind of rebuilding this year, but we have a real good leader in Gianna,” Cummings said. “Erin got to be around the girls last year, so she knows what St. Bede golf is and she played at Princeton as a freshman. She’s going to be a big help. This year there’s going to be some struggles as far as the team goes, but we’re looking for big things from Gianna and Erin.”
Coach: Brandon Crawford.
Top returners: Emma Kruse-Carter, Sr.; Halli Patterson, So.
Top newcomers: Madison Doran, Sr.; Morgan Forristall, Sr.; Hailey Pembleton, Sr.; Sophia Oester, Jr.; Ava Morton, Jr.; Addie Hecht, Jr.; Addie Carr, So.; Neveah Briddick, So.
Worthy of note: Kruse-Carter is a four-year varsity player who continues to improve. “EKC checks every box a coach would want in a captain. She’s a great teammate, she leads by example and she puts the classroom at a high priority,” Crawford said. Petersen experienced some “growing pains” in her first year, Crawford said, “but showed some really nice moments during camp. I think she is going to have a solid year.” A large group of newcomers also is expected to contribute.
Coach: David Lind
Top returners: Cassidy Peterson, Sr.; Callie Schoff, Sr.; Layne Sproston, Jr.
Worthy of note: Lind is looking for big things out of Schoff this year after she averaged a 54 last year. As a first-year player last season, Peterson shot a 71 in her first meet and a 49 in her last home match, finishing with a 62 average. “Callie is a four-year player and has a lot of inner motivation to get to sectional and has her eyes on personal and school records,” Lind said. “Expectations are also high for Cassidy and Layne, who really made big improvements during their first season last year. They are both very motivated to continue their progress from last year and to get to sectional. This core of three players will be exciting to watch this season.” With a big group of newcomers, Lind said he’s excited to see “who will emerge to help our team be successful this season.”
Coach: Zach Ross
Top returning players: Emma Dinges; Andrea Buhrow; Gracie Holmgren; Gretta Horner
Worth noting: The Clippers only have four players on the roster, but all four have experience. With a season under their belts, Ross is looking for improvement from the foursome. “We only have four girls out, so it’s just enough to fill a team,” Ross said. “Our goal is just to be able to compete this year. Last year, we weren’t really able to compete in any of the tournaments, so we’re hoping to be a little bit more competitive.”
Coach: Dillon Reel
Top returning players: Kaydence Harp, Sr.; Natalie Barton, Sr.; Emma Fasking, Sr.
Top newcomers: Lexie Campbell, Sr.; Mya Humm, Sr.; Mya Ramey, Fr.
Worth noting: Harp leads the senior-laden Red Raiders after earning all-area honors a year ago. Last fall, Harp was third in the area in average at 51 and missed advancing to sectional by three strokes. “We’re hoping she builds off what she did last year,” Reel said. “She missed sectional by a couple strokes, so we hope this year she puts together a good all-around year.” Barton and Fasking played on the varsity last season, while Campbell — who doubles as a volleyball player — returns after a year away. “We want to get somebody to advance out of the regional,” Reel said. “At the end of the day, that’s the biggest goal.”
Coach: Lisa Lindstrom
Top returning players: Audrey Haugens, Sr.; Abby Harms, Sr.; Emmie Wells, Jr.; Ava Marty, Jr.; Gwyn Frei, Jr.; Jessica Schultz, So.
Top newcomers: Morgan Gerdes, Sr.; Julia Ehrnthaller, So.
Worth noting: The Knights have a veteran roster with six players back with varsity experience. Fieldcrest also has a pair of first-year golfers who could contribute as well in Gerdes, who Lindstrom has a strong chip shot, and Ehrnthaller, who Lindstrom said has a nice drive. “We have quite a few strong golfers and as a team I can see us placing at the Heart of Illinois Conference and moving on to the sectional,” Lindstrom said.