Lady Tigers poised to build off last season’s success
By Jay Davis
After taking sixth in state last season, the Lady Tigers are poised for another strong golf season.
“With a top six finish at a soggy state tournament last year, our girls have the potential to move up the ladder,” said coach Jason Weisbeck. “I am excited to see them progress throughout the season, understanding that anything can happen.”
The Lady Tigers return a veteran team with a lot of postseason experience. Junior Chelsy Hoffman and sophomore Emily Dale have played in three state tournaments, while juniors Aundrea Kramer and Miranda Eisemann have played in two each.
Dale was an all-stater last season after tying for 18th place at the Girls’ State B Golf Tournament. All four girls were in the top half of field with Hoffman taking 25th, Kramer 36th and Eisemann 40th.
“We truly have a great bunch of girls who are willing to go out there day in and day out and give their best effort,” said Weisbeck. “They have a lot of experience as they have been on the varsity since middle school.”
Joining the Lady Tiger squad this spring are junior Cayla Hintz, sophomore Grace Jensen and middle schoolers Chloe Jungwirth and Lily Miner.
The season starts quickly with the Big Dakota Conference Meet in Chamberlain on Thursday and the Parkston Invitational in Mitchell on Friday.
Weisbeck said that even though yesterday (Tuesday) was the first day the girls were able to get on the course and do any golfing, their goals are the same, the first being to win the conference title on Thursday.
“The girls are mentally tougher than they were last year,” said Weisbeck, “having a taste of success and having a chance for even more this year.”
The top four had a lot of success in a weather-shortened season last year. Due to late snows, the girls did not have a meet until the annual Mobridge-Pollock Invitational. The late start did not keep the girls from dominating the area’s competition. They won the team title in all three meets, including winning the Central South Dakota Conference Tournament. Hoffman won the CSDC title and took first in Groton. Kramer won the Mobridge-Pollock Invitational title. All four girls finished in the top 10 in each of the three tournaments.
The girls finished second to state champion Parkston in the Region 3A Tournament, where Hoffman was fifth, Dale ninth, Kramer 10th and Eisemann 11th.
Weather permitting, the Lady Tigers will host the Mobridge-Pollock Invitational on April 24. They will play in Pierre (a match play event with Parkston) on April 26, Groton on April 28 and Milbank on May 3. The pre-region meet and Region 3A Tournament will be in Mitchell on May 6 and 12, respectively. The State A Golf Tournament is in Spearfish on May 19 and 20.
Weisbeck said the team to beat will be the two-time defending state champions.
“The top competition in our immediate area is definitely Parkston,” said Weisbeck. “They will reload again this year.”