Willis moves on to golf state
Sydney Willis (left) earned top three honors to advance to state golf this Friday. Rachel Klingensmith (right) and the Squaws finished 10th as a team. (Photo by Dylan Malone)
KENDALLVILLE — South Adams' Sydney Willis advanced to this Friday's state golf tournament at the Legends Golf Club in Franklin with the third place finish at East Noble's regionals over the weekend.
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Participating with the SA sophomore at Noble Hawk Golf Course was the entire Bellmont team after qualifying for regionals with a second place finish in the Norwell sectional. The Squaws finished 10th place with a team score of 362 missing the cut for state as a team.
Perennial powerhouse Penn dominated the match as expected with a 297 team score compared to the second place team Northwood's 335 finish and Rochester's 338.
Following the top three teams who advanced to state as well on Friday were the squads who just missed the cut including fourth place Warsaw at 341, Marrion's 346, East Noble at 349, Homestead seventh at 351, Carroll at 352, Bishop Dwenger at 358, and the Squaws in 10th.
Behind Bellmont sat Canterbury, South Bend Adams, Elkhart Central, Leo, Angola, Southwood, Huntington North and West Noble in that order.
Kari Bellville of Penn finished top medalist overall with a 71 on the day, while her teammate Kathryn Willenbrink was second in the one-two punch with a 72. Since both advance with their team, the next three placers without a team moved on including Kayla Adamson of Marion who finished tied for second with a 72. Also moving on was Oak Hill's Lauren Tibbetts with a 74 and SA's Willis who also shot a 74. Just missing the cut individually was Jaycee Bunner of Blackhawk Christian at 75 and Nikki LaLonde of Warsaw with a 76.
For Bellmont, Macy Phegley led the way with an 89 but was followed closely by Rachel Klingensmith and Morgan Ellsworth who each shot a 90 on the day. Kelsey Roth fired a 93 and Julia Brewer finished with a 95 to round out the balanced Squaws' scoring.
Willis will get a day off from school on Friday to participate in the state tourney which tees off at 8:30 a.m. at the Legends Golf Club. The sophomore will have an 8:39 a.m. approximate tee-time from the 10th hole.
The event will feature the top three teams from East Noble's regionals as well as the top individuals. Also feeding into the tournament will be regionals from Lafayette Jefferson, New Castle, Roncalli, and Washington.