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Girls Golf: Wingers hanging on to second

Red Wing’s Reagan Haley putts for birdie on hole No. 8 during Day 1 of the Class 2A state golf tournament Tuesday at Ridges at Sand Creek in Jordan. The Wingers are in second place with a team score of 326. (Republican Eagle photo by Joe Brown)1 / 3
Lake City's Lexi Geolat chips out of the rough on hole No. 17 at the Ridges at Sand Creek in Jordan during Day 1 of the Class 2A state golf championship meet on Tuesday. (Republican Eagle photo by Joe Brown)2 / 3
Red Wing's Kayla Oberding watches her fairway shot head towards the green on hole No. 18 at Ridges at Sand Creek in Jordan. (Republican Eagle photo by Joe Brown)3 / 3

JORDAN, Minn. – While the rest of the field is looking up at Detroit Lakes, Red Wing is in the driver’s seat as the state runner-up after Day 1. 

Playing in the Class 2A state golf tournament, the Wingers’ girls golf team finished the first day with a team score of 326, holding a two-stroke lead over Pequot Lakes at the Ridges at Sand Creek.

“We played pretty well as a team. I think we can play better, but we can probably play worse, too,” said senior Nicole Schammel, who leads Red Wing after Day 1 with a round of 38-38—76. “You never know with golf. Hopefully we make some more putts tomorrow and can play better.”

As the Wingers try to hold off Pequot Lakes for second, Detroit Lakes sprinted past the pack with a record round of 293, four strokes better than its Day 1 record from last year. 

“No one was going to touch Detroit Lakes today,” said Red Wing head coach Mark Herzog, “and we knew going in that they had the numbers.”

Minnewaska Area is sitting in fourth place with 341, and Osakis rounded out the top five on Day 1 with 366.

Detroit Lakes’ historic performance served as a motivator as the Lakers played in the same foursome as the Wingers.

“I always like the competition and playing with the really good girls,” Schammel said. “It makes it more fun and it gives you something to chase.”

Following Schammel, Stephanie Herzog shot a 37 on the front-nine on the way to a 78. Continuing her strong late-season play, Sophia Yoemans carded a 43-42—85. 

“I knew it was a tough course. Really hard with a lot of water,” Yoemans said, “but I thought it was a little bit easier after I played it a couple times. You just have to get used to it and know where to hit the shots.”

Mark Herzog added, “Sophia played well for us today. We’ve been able to count on her as our No. 3 and that has been really nice.”

Kayla Oberding and Solveig Christenson each put together rounds of 87, and Reagan Haley closed out the Wingers’ day with an 88. 

With the state title all but assured to Detroit Lakes, Red Wing hopes to stave off Pequot Lakes for one more day. But first, that’s going to take an improvement over Tuesday’s round. 

“We left some out there,” Mark Herzog said. “We could have been around 320, which could have given us more separation.”

Yoemans added, “We have got to play well tomorrow. We don’t have second place yet.”

Schimbeno leads Lake City golfers

The Ridges at Sand Creek golf course has been unkind to Lake City’s Emily Schimbeno in the past. In two previous state appearances, Schimbeno’s best round was an 86 in Day 1 of last year’s tournament before she was disqualified after signing an incorrect score card.

“I haven’t played good on this course the couple times I’ve been here,” Schimbeno said. “I wanted to prove to myself that I could do well here.”

Schimbeno was able to exorcise some of those demons in Jordan by shooting a 42-36—78 on Day 1, sitting in a four-way tie for 11th place. 

As many golfers struggled on the back-nine, including teammates Erin Pennington and Lexi Geolat, Schimbeno was able to battle her way to an even-par on holes 10-18. 

“On those holes, you have to be able to lay up and get good ball placement on the greens,” Schimbeno said. “If you don’t get it where you want it to go, you get in trouble. And, luckily, I was able to do that today.”

Schimbeno continued, “I started with a bogey (on 10), so on that next hole, I knew I needed a good shot. So on the next hole, I got a good shot and was able to get my birdie, and I played well from there.”

Geolat had a 42-49—91, and Pennington finished her day with 44-48—92. Leading all golfers after Day 1 was Detroit Lakes’ Sydney Busker with a 36-36—72.

Joe Brown

Joe Brown is the sports editor for the Red Wing Republican Eagle. Previously, he worked at the Marshall Independent and the St. Cloud Times. For updates on local sports, follow Joe on Twitter at @RE_JBrown.

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