Knowing they had a solid chance to earning a coveted state tournament berth competing at the class 2A regional final in West Liberty Monday, May 24, Anamosa girls golf coach Tammy Seeley didn’t want anything to take away from the focus of her team.
“I don’t think any Anamosa girls golf team has come this close to the state tournament in a long time, and I didn’t want the girls thinking ahead, I wanted them to stay in the moment and they all did exactly that,” said Seeley as the Raiders pushed away the pressure and advanced to the state tournament as a team for the first time in school history after finishing second in West Liberty carding an 18-hole score of 416, trailing only regional final champion Williamsburg who fired a sizzling 370.
“All of our girls were so mentally tough throughout the entire tournament. They didn’t let a bad shot or two ruin their entire round, they were able to get past that and move forward. That’s why we’re headed to state!”
Maddie Nemmers led the way for the Raider girls carding a 92 (46-46) that would have qualified her for state as an individual if the team hadn’t made it, placing fifth overall. Cecilia Venenga (49-52) and Lexah Miller (50-51) added rounds of 101 each while Kennedy Ward turned in the final counting score with a 122 (62-60).
“Four teams were vying for two spots to the state tournament, and with Mid-Prairie and Tipton being two of the other three, we liked our chances because we had already beat them earlier this season,” Seeley said. “That gave our girls a lot of confidence coming in, and they all went out and did what they all know how to do, play some solid golf.”
Kylie Chapman (62-60) and Ava Hinrichsen (73-65) also took to the West Liberty course and turned in cards of 128 and 138, respectively.
Mid-Prairie took third overall finishing with a team score of 439 while Tipton rounded out the 2A regional final field tallying a 449.
Tipton’s Alli Nash led all golfers firing a medalist score of 79 (41-38).
Anamosa travels to Marshalltown to open their 2A state tournament journey Tuesday, June 2, before finishing the 36-hole, two-day event Wednesday, June 2.
The Raider girls earned the right to compete for a shot at state after winning their class 2A regional first-round 18-hole tournament in Dyersville Monday, May 17.
“Going into the regional meet, I really felt like we could win,” said Seeley, as her team went out proved her words prophetic, claiming the team championship after firing a 412 score that topped runner-up Tipton (417).
“The girls just kept playing their game and showed some serious mental toughness taking one shot at a time. I told the girls you can’t ever gauge where you are scoring-wise, so stay in the moment. One or two bad holes doesn’t mean anything.”
The Raider girls turned in three of the tournament’s top-6 score, led by a sizzling rounds of 98 from Lexah Miller and Maddie Nemmers, who tied for fourth overall at the 46-golfer event.
“The scores started to come in and there were six at 100 or under, and we three of them,” Seeley said. “At that point I knew we were in pretty good shape.”
Miller carded an opening nine-hole score of 50 before coming back with a 48 while Nemmers flipped the script, opening with a 48 before ending her day with a 50 on the final nine.
Cecilia Venenga was also among those top-6 finishing with a career-best round of 100 (48-52) that was sixth while Kennedy Ward turned in the final counting score for the Anamosa girls adding a 116 (61-55).
“One of the competitors told Cecilia, ‘my coach told me we just needed to beat Anamosa,’ “Seeley said. “I asked Cecilia how she responded to that? She said I just played my game and beat her.”
Kylie Chapman (62-56) and Ava Hinrichsen (64-68) also took to the Dyersville Country Club course and fired rounds of 118 and 132, respectively for the Raider team.
Rounding out the team scoring were: West Branch (419), Wilton (423), Northeast (428), host Beckman (431), Cascade (455) and Camanche (506).
Tipton’s Alli Nash led all golfers carding a medalist score of 92 (48-44).