Girls golf: Parker's dream season continues
MADISON—The Janesville Parker girls golf team has been dreaming big for 12 months.
Today, the Vikings will simply set out to enjoy the reverie.
The five-player team of Taylor Wyss, Micayla Richards, Kailey McDade, Lindsey Ahrens and Keara Richards will tee off at the WIAA Girls State Golf Championships at University Ridge this morning. It's Parker's second trip to state in program history.
“About a month ago we were traveling back from an invite. We were talking about going to state, because we've talked all year about it,” Parker coach Mary Ross said. “Micayla said, 'If we get to state, all my dreams will have come true. And then we're just going to enjoy it and play away and play our best.'
“So I had shirts made that say, 'Dreams really do come true.' We're ready, and we're just going to enjoy it and play our hearts out.”
Homestead will attempt to defend its state championship and win the title for the fifth time. Verona's Jessica Reinicke returns to defend her individual championship.
Parker's players would love to find themselves in the hunt, but won't be putting any undue pressure on themselves after accomplishing their biggest goal of the season. They won the Janesville Craig Sectional to advance to the state tournament.
“We still want to do well, but if you don't, don't get mad,” Wyss said. “We already made it to state.”
Wyss is the lone Vikings players with experience at the state tournament.
She advanced as an individual qualifier last year and shot back-to-back scores of 90, finishing respectably in the middle of the pack.
Wyss will impart a bit of knowledge to her teammates before their tee their first ball.
“I think just to not be nervous,” she said. “When I went, I was really nervous—like, 'Oh my God, I'm going to state.' But it's no big deal. It's just the same as here.”
Parker's dream postseason run continues with its first tee time at 9:20 a.m.
Milton's McCue, Knudsen ready, as well
Milton junior Maddie McCue played in two state tournaments with her teammates, but today's round will be a bit different.
The Red Hawks missed out on another trip to state as a team by just one stroke at sectionals, but McCue and sophomore CheyAnn Knudsen advanced as individuals.
“I'm very excited and have high confidence right now,” McCue said. “The last couple years, as a team, we knew we could do really well. So it was more pressure and I was a little more nervous. Now I'm just going to try to have fun, play my game and not worry about what everyone else on my team is doing.”
She finished tied for 15th last year and won the Craig Sectional last week with a 3-over 75. Knudsen, who tied the low round of her career at sectionals with an 80, shot 181 over two days at state last year to finish tied for 46th.
WIAA Girls State Golf
At University Ridge, Madison
LOCAL TEE TIMES
Janesville Parker—Keara Richards, 9:20 a.m.; Lindsey Ahrens, 9:28; Kailey McDade, 9:36; Micayla Richards; 9:44; Taylor Wyss, 9:52.
Milton—CheyAnn Knudsen, 8 a.m.; Maddie McCue, 8:32.