Lakeview 2nd, Spartans' Little is all-state

Lakeview 2nd, Spartans' Little is all-state

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Lakeview 2nd, Spartans' Little is all-state

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The Lakeview High girls’ golf team matched the highest finish as a squad in school history on Saturday when the Spartans placed second at the MHSAA Division 2 finals at The Meadows Golf Course on the campus of Grand Valley State University in Allendale.

Lakeview senior Danielle Little, a regional co-medalist a week earlier, earned a top-10 all-state medal by placing in a tie for fifth place individually with a two-day total of 161 — she was first-day medalist Friday with a 78 and followed that with an 83 Saturday.

The Spartans — in the state finals for the 10th straight year — had a team score of 707 via a 354 Friday and a 353 Saturday. First as a team for the fourth consecutive season was Muskegon Mona Shores with stellar 666 (341-325), third was Okemos at 711 (358-353), and fourth was Birmingham Seaholm at 712 (358-354).

Aside from Little’s all-state 78-83/161, the Spartans received a 181 from junior Megan Strole (93-88), a 182 from junior Amanda Noakes (89-93), a 183 from senior Sarah Vocke (94-89/she also had a hole in one on Friday), a no-count 113 from senior Lexi Popovich on Friday, and a 94 from sophomore Julia Ryan on Saturday.

“We’re obviously excited to have placed second, because it was a hard fight for that second spot,” said Lakeview coach Tony Evans, whose 2008 and 2009 squads had back-to-back runner-up state finishes, and whose squad last year placed tied for fourth.

“We knew Mona Shores was going to come out firing on Saturday with a lower score than it had Friday in those rainy and windy conditions, and it did with that 325, so we were battling for second place. And even with all the girls under a lot of pressure to get that runner-up spot, we did it. I’m proud of all of my golfers.”

Little was a bit disappointed at not holding onto the individual medalist spot she was in Friday, yet overall said she was pleased with her’s and her team’s effort.

“On a really wet course Friday in tough conditions, I played pretty well … and Saturday, well, I couldn’t have asked for any better,” said Little, a key four-year performer for the Spartans — who captured their sixth straight All-City, SMAC East and SMAC Big 16 crowns earlier this campaign while also taking first-place honors in regionals for the second year in a row.

“I’m happy with the way I finished … and I’m also glad that the team finished so well,” Little said. “We gave it our best shot.”

Prior to Little turning the trick this weekend, the last Lakeview girls’ golfers to make top-10 all-state at the state finals were Grace Labrecque and Erin Peavy in 2009.

Saturday’s individual tri-medalists were Hailey Hrynewich of Mona Shores, Ellie Nichols of Okemos and Kristyn Crippen of East Lansing, all with 158s.

The other local individual qualifier at The Meadows — Gull Lake sophomore Cydney Martell — had a 200 (98-102).

DIVISION 3

At Bedford Valley Golf Club in Battle Creek — which will be the site of girls’ and boys’ state golf finals for the next five years — Marshall finished 12th for the second straight year, this time with a two-day total of 826 (425-401).

The Redhawks were making their fifth straight state finals appearance, and their sixth in the past seven seasons.

Senior Amanda Genise capped of a stellar prep career with an 84 Saturday to go along with the 91 she had Friday in much wetter and windier conditions for a 175 total. A score of 169 or better was needed for a top-10 individual medal.

Also for Marshall, sophomore Sammi Price had a two-day 205 (102-103), sophomore Annie Cape a 220 (116-104), junior Jill Puckett a 234 (124-110) and sophomore Shannon Hicks a 228 (116-112).

“Today, score-wise, we played a little more like we normally play. We chopped 24 strokes off our first-day total, and we had some girls gain some great experience for next year and the year after,” said Marshall coach Dick Hamilton, whose squad was second to Marshall in the SMAC East again this fall.

“I’d also like to say that Bedford Valley did a great job with the course, keeping it playable through a lot of rain. The bunch here did a great job.”

Genise said she enjoyed her last time out on the links as a four-year varsity member at Marshall.

“I hung in there after shooting a little high on Friday, and I was just happy the whole team hung in there and played better today,” she said. “I’m just proud of our team to have made it back to state again — that meant a lot to us.”

Harper Creek senior Jozlin Johnson and Coldwater junior Anna Wendorf were at the finals as individual qualifiers. Johnson, playing in her second straight finals, finished at 177 (89-88); and Wendorf had a 195 (99-96).

Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central claimed the team title with a 710 (367-343/it also won in 2010); Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook-Kingswood was second with 712 (355-357); and tying for third were Detroit Country Day and defending champ Grosse Ile with 713s.

Individual medalist honors went to Dearborn Divine Child’s Natalie Blazo with a 157 (81-76).

For complete results from all MHSAA golf finals, please see mhsaa.com.

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