WEST WENDOVER – When the Division 1A-2A girls golf season began, West Wendover head coach Kathy Durham did not know if she even had enough girls to fill a team.
Thankfully, Durham had the services of senior and 2015 state champion Sarah Isaacs (2016 state runner-up) and junior Sydney Boatman – a 2016 2nd-Team All-State selection – in her back pocket.
Durham thought her team was in “rebuild mode” and featured just one other girl, freshman Rebecca Wahlstrom.
Along the way, she picked up newcomers and the Lady Wolverines qualified for state – a good thing considering the state tournament was held at Toana Vista Golf Course in West Wendover.
For all the marbles on their home course, the Lady Wolverines took second place in the Division 1A-2A Nevada State Girls Golf Championship on Tuesday, led by Isaacs and Boatman.
Sierra Lutheran won the state title with a team score of 928 (477, 451), and Kami Niles also gave the Lady Falcons the individual state championship with a two-round card of 178 (92, 86).
West Wendover finished with a two-round team score of 1,026 (538, 488), shaving 50 strokes from its first-round score on day two.
Isaacs finished as the state runner-up for the second straight season, shooting 182 for the tournament, carding a 97 in the first round and improving with an 85 in round two.
“Sarah was up three strokes when she made the turn in the first round, but she struggled on the back-nine. She shot about 10 strokes higher than her average. She put too much pressure on herself,” Durham said. “In the second round, she played a lot more like she usually does. She shot 12 strokes better than the first day.”
Boatman made a serious charge during the second round, enabling her to move from a tie for fourth and fifth in the first round, climbing to a third-place finish outright.
“Sydney was in a battle around fourth or fifth but she played so well the second day, especially in the last nine holes,” Durham said. “The girls teed off on the back-nine to start the second round, so it was great to see her finish strong on the front-nine coming up to the clubhouse.”
She shot a 106 in the first round, slicing 11 strokes from her score for a 95 on day two for a two-round total of 201 – beating fourth-place Adyson Casteel’s (Incline) mark of 209 by eight strokes.
Isaacs and Boatman each swung to 1st-Team All-State honors.
Incline’s Maria Leoncio claimed fifth with a 211 (104, 107), and there was a huge gap between her and sixth place – Battle Mountain’s Lynzee Devlin carding the final 1st-Team All-State selection with a two-day score of 245 (121, 124).
Wells senior Victoria Young ranked seventh with a 254 (132, 122), and Savannah Gunther of Battle Mountain placed in the top-10 at ninth with a two-day score of 263 (132, 131) – each earning 2nd-Team All-State honors.
The Lady Longhorns ranked fourth in the team standings with a score of 1,161 (579, 582), and the Lady Leopards placed fifth with a mark of 1,173 (588, 585).
Wells’ Grace French placed 16th with a tournament total of 301 (150, 151), and teammate Lexie Johnny ranked 19th at 306 (151, 155).
Also for the Lady Leopards, Aspen Foster took 23rd with a score of 312 (155, 157).
Battle Mountain’s Kennedy Soule placed 25th at 319 (159, 160).
Wahlstrom tied for 25th with a 319 on rounds of 168 and 151 – shaving 17 strokes on day two – and senior newcomer Sophia Wyatt took 27th with a 324, going 167 in the first round and shooting 10 strokes better with a 157 in the second round.
“Sophia had never played golf before. We had three girls who have never picked up a club,” Durham said. “She and her freshman sister, Elise Wyatt, joined the team together after the preseason. I hope Rebecca and Elise will be around for the next three years. They should keep getting better and better.”
Battle Mountain’s Adriene Burkhart placed 29th with a score of 334 on a pair of 167s, and Elise Wyatt rounded out West Wendover’s roster in 33rd with a score of 354 – making a remarkable 30-stroke improvement in the second round (192, 162).
“It was awesome. To go from not having a complete team when the season started to winning second in the state was great,” Durham said. “It would have been a shame to host the state tournament and not have a team playing in it, so I’m happy things worked out the way they did.”
Congratulations to the Lady Falcons of Sierra Lutheran and Kami Niles for their respective state titles, coach Kathy Durham and the Lady Wolverines on their runner-up finish, Sarah Isaacs and Sydney Boatman on their 1st-Team All-State selections and to everyone who qualified for and competed in the 2017 Division 1A-2A Nevada State Girls Golf Championship.