By Brad Morris
Westfall has a proud girls golf tradition that has included winning district championships and making four appearances in the state tournament, where it has finished as high as third.
But, until this season, the Mustangs had to play as an independent due to the Scioto Valley Conference not having enough full teams competing to make girls golf an official conference sport that was eligible for a conference championship.
The Mustangs made history on Thursday by claiming the first-ever SVC girls golf championship with a nine-hole team score of 174 at Jaycees Golf Course.
“Obviously, every team loves the excitement that builds from playing consistent competition,” Westfall coach Jonathan Barker said. “The SVC is full of great young ladies, and coaches that care about them.
“Winning tonight was a special way for us as a team to also get prepared for sectionals at Jaycees on Monday.”
It was a winner-take-all format to determine the conference champion, player of the year and all-conference honors with six of the conference’s eight schools fielding complete teams. Conference matches had been held earlier this season, but they didn’t have enough full teams.
Zane Trace finished in a distant second at 210 and Southeastern took third at 211.
Emily Cook captured conference player of the year honors with a scorecard of 38. Alexa Oney followed with 44, and Maddie Cook and Paige Weiss each shot 46. Also playing for the Mustangs were Marianna Parker (48) and Kathryn Lockhart (55).
“We won as a team. First and foremost, we play for each other,” Barker said. “We know each girl isn’t going to have their best night at the same time, but we keep working for each other.
“When we are talking about what went right, we had personal bests from Alexa Oney with a 44, freshman Kathryn Lockhart with a 55, and while its unofficial at this point, it looks like all of our girls made all-conference.”
Barker also highlighted the play of Emily Cook in leading the charge to winning the first-ever conference girls golf championship trophy.
“Emily Cook stuffed an 8 iron on the last hole and then made a putt for birdie to shoot 38 and earn player of the year honors,” he said. “Though it was determined that this honor was just from tonight’s score, Emily did finish with the low average for all the SVC conference matches this year, as well.”
Barker discussed the chemistry that the Mustangs have enjoyed and how it has helped fuel their success on the links.
“These girls are awesome,” he said. “They cheer for each other; they are a blast to be around and also know how to flip the switch and get into work mode when they need it.
“Emily and Maddie are always looking out for the team as our seniors. They have been a model of the hard work necessary to play at the top level. They are at the course seven days a week, no matter how much I try to get them to take a day off.”
The Mustangs, now 38-2 overall on the season, join Pickaway County rivals Circleville and Logan Elm on Monday at Jaycees to open postseason play.
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