AVON LAKE — Winning the West Shore Conference championship is all Avon senior Kaitlin Neumann had known coming into Thursday’s conference tournament on the Legacy Course at Sweetbriar Golf Club.
Neumann made sure it stayed that way, shooting an 82 to earn the individual championship for the third straight year while leading the Eagles to first place and the overall conference title for a fourth straight season.
Their overall score of 362 was 52 strokes lower than runner-up Bay in the five-team tournament.
“It was a little bumpy at the start, shooting a 44,” said Neumann, who averages a 79 for 18 holes. “But I pulled it together on the back nine with a 38. It wasn’t as low as I would have hoped it would be, but it was a decent score.
“I know some of the par 5s were dead into the wind, so the conditions definitely affected everyone. It probably took off at least 15 yards with your driver and made you rely on iron shots to the green.”
Sarah Warnkin, Avon’s No. 3 golfer, shot a 91 (46-45), the third-lowest overall score, while Taylor Doehne added a 94 (45-49) and Hannah Strack a 95 (47-48).
“With the new format counting the preview and the regular season (into the championship picture), we had some room for errors,” Avon girls coach Frank DeSmit said. “It was a tough day out there for the girls, I know that.
“I think our scores were a little higher than we hoped for. I told the girls, with the wind and that we’re playing off the white tees and it was a little wet, you probably need to add five strokes to what you normally would shoot. Even with that, I think we still could have done better.”
North Ridgeville freshman Nicole Gerome was the individual leader at the turn with a 41. She came back with a 46 to finish with an 87, but that was good enough for second overall.
“I would have liked to have done better, but I made some awesome shots,” Gerome said. “I really just wanted to shoot in the 80s, but I did have high expectations for myself.”
North Ridgeville coach Norm Frindt was pleased with his freshman No. 1.
“For a little freshman who’s only 14 years old, she played extremely well here,” he said.
TEAM STANDINGS: 1. Avon 362, 2. Bay 414, 3. Vermilion 440, 4. North Ridgeville 463, 5. Rocky River 487.
TOP INDIVIDUALS: 1. Kaitlin Neumann (Avon) 82, 2. Nicole Gerome (North Ridgeville) 87, 3. Sarah Warnkin (Avon) 91.
AVON (362): Kaitlin Neumann 38-44—82, Hannah Strack 47-48—95, Sarah Warnkin 46-45—91, Taylor Doehne 45-49—99, Anna Schatschneider WD, Erin McNamee 57-50—107.
VERMILION (440): Jessica Lardie 46-47—93, Alex Kyle 56-58—114, Taylor Fortner 61-55—116, Sarah Hall 61-56—117, Laura Allen 67-68—135, Sam Kyle 68-65—133.
NORTH RIDGEVILLE (463): Nicole Gerome 46-41—87, Ashley Caraszi 57-63—120, Aimee Caraszi 55-68—126, Kelly Wisniewski 61-69—130, Yejung Moon 79-77—156.
Contact Dan Gilles at 329-7135 or email@example.com.