Pickerington Times-Sun

Girls Golf

North looks to sustain success

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Over the past eight seasons, the Pickerington High School North girls golf team has won six OCC-Ohio Division championships.

In addition, the Panthers have captured three consecutive Division I sectional titles.

With two of its top five players from a year ago having returned, North is cautiously optimistic that it can be strong again this fall.

"Hopefully, we will be," 12th-year coach Kitty McGrievy said. "That's the hope."

The Panthers opened Aug. 6, shooting a 337 to win the first round of the OCC-Ohio tournament at Royal American Links. Upper Arlington (370) was a distant second, followed by Canal Winchester (396), Gahanna (401), Hilliard Davidson (420), Thomas Worthington (448) and Lancaster (455).

Sophomore Lauryn Oliphant led North, carding an 80 to finish second behind medalist Emily Hughes of Gahanna (79).

The second round was Aug. 12 at Mentel Memorial.

North also won the seven-team Canal Winchester Invitational on Aug. 7 at Westchester, shooting a 339 as the host Indians placed second (366). The Panthers then finished 10th (348) in the 15-team Panther Invitational on Aug. 8 at Turnberry behind champion Dublin Coffman (306).

Oliphant and senior Krista Moore competed in the postseason last fall for the Panthers, who scored a 338 to win the 11-team sectional at Westchester.

North then placed fifth with a 374 at district at The Links at Groveport, as Moore shot a team-best 90 and Oliphant carded a 99. Coffman (300) won the district title and moved on to state along with Dublin Jerome (308).

As many as seven other players could contribute for the Panthers this season, including three other seniors in Kyndal Smith, Lexi Watson and Rachel Moore, who is not related to Krista.

Also on the team are juniors Hannah Appleman and Lavonca Davis and sophomores Lauren Conley and Anne Potts. Davis, who was among the team's top scorers during tryouts, placed third in the first round of the league tournament with an 82 and tied for second in the Canal Winchester Invitational with a 79.

Last season, each of North's top five players averaged 90 or better during the four rounds of the OCC-Ohio tournament, as the Panthers went 28-0 in the league for the second consecutive season.

Kristin Oliphant, a 2014 graduate, was league runner-up with a 79.75 average, behind Hughes (75.8). Another 2014 graduate, Shayleigh Holbrook, finished fourth (82.0) in league average.

Lauryn Oliphant (87.25), Krista Moore (89.75) and Rachel Moore (90.0) also competed in all four rounds of the league tournament.

"We graduated six seniors from last year, but we've had some kids step up," McGrievy said. "I think we've got some young kids who have really improved over the summer and have worked hard over the last year. What the seniors bring to the table is experience. With some of the young kids, when they understand that hitting it a ton isn't always the best strategy, they're going to be pretty good."

Duncan expected to lead Tigers

Central returns all but one player from a year ago and should have one of the area's top players in senior Emma Duncan as it looks to improve on a sixth-place finish in the OCC-Cardinal.

Duncan shot an 80 in the Division I sectional at Westchester last year as Central finished seventh (374). She was the lone district qualifier for the Tigers, carding an 87 to finish nine strokes short of advancing to state.

"It's going to be an interesting year," second-year coach Mary Ann Wharton said.

"The girls have been practicing a lot over the summer and are excited about the year."

Central opened Aug. 6 by finishing fourth (408) in the first round of the OCC-Cardinal tournament at The Links at Groveport, behind three-time defending state champion Jerome (306), Olentangy Liberty (365) and Olentangy (371) and ahead of New Albany (422), Olentangy Orange (430) and Delaware (490).

Jerome has won the last six league titles.

The Tigers, who finished third (374) in the Canal Winchester Invitational on Aug. 7, competed in the second round of league play Aug. 12 at Westchester.

Joining Duncan in the senior class are Morgan Terbovich, who shot 96 at sectional last year, as well as Mackenzie Meister and McKenzi Price.

Juniors Kiera Harper and Caitlin Tarr also competed for Central at sectional.

Others in the program are junior Andria Williams and sophomores Daisha Dominic, Brittany Owens and Isbel Velez.

"The returning varsity players stand a little above the rest, but what I like is that they're always working with the other girls," Wharton said.

"I'm depending on us having good leadership."

SCHEDULES

CENTRAL

Aug. 6 -- OCC-Cardinal at The Links at Groveport

Aug. 7 -- Canal Winchester Invitational at Westchester

Aug. 8 -- Panther Invitational at Turnberry

Aug. 11 -- Gahanna Invitational at Jefferson

Aug. 12 -- OCC-Cardinal at Westchester

Aug. 19 -- New Albany at Winding Hollow

Aug. 25 -- TBA at Turnberry

Aug. 26 -- OCC-Cardinal at Royal American Links

Aug. 28 -- Lakewood at Harbor Hills

Sept. 2 -- TBA at Turnberry

Sept. 6 -- Bexley Invitational at Blacklick Woods

Sept. 9 -- OCC-Cardinal at Mentel Memorial

Sept. 17 -- Lakewood at Turnberry

Sept. 20 -- OSU Bye Day Classic at Mentel Memorial

Sept. 22 -- Hilliard Bradley at Rolling Meadows

Sept. 24 -- New Albany at Turnberry

Sept. 27 -- Marysville Invitational at Darby Creek

Oct. 4 -- Fall Classic at The Links at Groveport

NORTH

Aug. 6 -- OCC-Ohio at Royal American Links

Aug. 7 -- Canal Winchester Invitational at Westchester

Aug. 8 -- Panther Invitational at Turnberry

Aug. 11 -- Gahanna Invitational at Jefferson

Aug. 12 -- OCC-Ohio at Mentel Memorial

Aug. 19 -- Watterson and Worthington Kilbourne at Turnberry

Aug. 23 -- Midwest Classic at Skyland Pines

Aug. 26 -- OCC-Ohio at Groveport

Aug. 30 -- Lima Central Catholic Invitational at Hawthorne Hills

Sept. 3 -- Dublin Jerome and Upper Arlington at Turnberry

Sept. 6 -- Dublin Jerome Invitational at Scioto Reserve

Sept. 9 -- OCC-Ohio at Westchester

Sept. 13 -- Turkeyfoot Invitational at Turkeyfoot Lakes

Sept. 15 -- Marysville and Upper Arlington at Turnberry

Sept. 18 -- Worthington Kilbourne at TBA

Sept. 20 -- OSU Bye Day Classic at Mentel Memorial

Sept. 22 -- Marysville at Darby Creek

Sept. 27 -- Marysville Invitational at Darby Creek

Oct. 4 -- Fall Classic at The Links at Groveport

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