ST. JAMES - The Fairmont Cardinal girls golfers erased a four-shot deficit at the turn to capture their third consecutive South Central Conference championship on Monday in St. James.
"I can't remember having to come back like that this season, but our girls made up those four shots through the first three holes of their second nine (holes)," said Fairmont girls golf mentor Ron Kallheim, who guided the program to its 19th league crown during his 25-year head coaching tenure.
Lizzie Larson generated five pars and birdied the par-4 No. 11 hole to engineer the girls meet's best 18-hole round of 43-44-87 to help the Cardinals rally to a meet-day winning total of 365 - 13 shots better than runner-up Blue Earth Area.
The Cardinals’ Carter Welchlin hammers his drive off the tee during the SCC Meet on Monday in St. James. Welchlin went on to capture all-conference individual honors as Fairmont placed third as a team on the day. Cardinal head boys golf coach Brad Haugen looks on. (Photo by Chip Pearson)
Fairmont, which won the dual-meet title with a perfect 5-0 mark, produced a total of 22 points to win the combined team crown, with Blue Earth Area placing second overall at 18.
Larson not only captured the meet-day gold medal with her low-scoring ways, but also earned the combined SCC girls points championship with 92 - three better than Waseca's Melissa Bartz.
"Obviously, Lizzie (Larson) shot a great round, but Elizabeth Kim turned in the round of the day by shooting a career-best round of 88 for us today," said Kallheim. "Megan (Rosol) and Emily (Splinter) really had nice second-half comebacks for us, too."
Kim, who bettered her previous personal-best of 94, penciled in the meet-day competition's No. 2 round of 44-44-88 by sinking five pars. Kim's runner-up meet-day showing also earned her all-conference honors by pushing her point total to 76 to claim the ninth of 10 individual spots.
Megan Rosol, who fired a 51 on the back nine, bounced back with a 42 on the front side to net a three-way tie for sixth overall on the day with Blue Earth Area's Autumn Drake and St. Peter's Katy Kuiper at 93. Rosol, who made four pars on the day, captured third place in the seasonal points race with 88.
Splinter topped the Cardinals' lineup with seven pars to pace a 42-55-97 on Monday, while teammate Cayce Craig rounded out the championship effort by firing a 53-57-110.
Natali Fellows penciled in a team-leading, meet-day round of 45-47-92 to pace the Bucs and sealed an all-conference bid by tying for seventh place in the points race with New Ulm's Corinne McKeeth at 78 each.
Autumn Drake, Allie Curtis and Aeli Olson each broke the century mark to add scoring punch to Fellows' mark for Blue Earth Area. Drake fired a 47-46-93 to tie for sixth overall on Monday, Curtis generated the No. 9 meet-day total of 45-49-94, while Olson posted a 51-48-99.
Drake captured fourth place overall in the all-conference points standings with 86, while Curtis generated the No. 6 combined points total at 79 to merit all-SCC honors.
In the boys' portion of the SCC Meet, Mitch DeKruif, Austin Snow and Josh Kummerfeldt each broke the 80 barrier to engineer Waseca's meet-day first-place finish (312) en route to the overall boys team points championship with 22 - four better than runner-up New Ulm.
DeKruif, who outdueled Bluejay teammate Snow by a mere one stroke - 75-76 - edged out Kummerfeldt for top individual all-conference honors in the points standings - 88-83.
Kelton Schmitz fired a third-best meet-day round of 77 to pace New Ulm's second-place meet-day total of 319 and also locked up all-conference individual honors via a third-place combined score of 82 points. Schmitz edged Blue Earth Area's Andy Aukes for the No. 3 spot in the points race.
Aukes generated a 39-42-81 meet-day round to top the Bucs' fourth-place meet-day team total of 342. Aukes earned all-SCC accolades with a fourth-place 82 points.
Carter Welchlin shared the No. 4 meet-day round of 79 with St. Peter's Cole Miller and Waseca's Kummerfeldt to guide Fairmont to a third-place meet-day total of 333. Welchlin transformed his 42-37-79, including eight pars and two birdies, into an eighth-place all-SCC points total of 70 - just two points better than teammate Josh Baldus' ninth-place 68.
"We haven't shot that low since the first of the year, so we're peaking at the right time," said Fairmont head boys golf coach Brad Haugen. "We also got two all-conference players, so that's good."
Baldus connected for seven pars and one birdie during Monday's SCC Meet, while teammates Dylan Post and Joe Nordquist rounded out the Cardinals' counting marks. Post fired a 39-43-82, including eight pars and two birdies, while Nordquist rolled home seven pars to pace his round of 44-44-88.
Cole Huinker made five pars to fuel a 48-46-94 for Fairmont, while Ian Hasek generated two pars and one birdie en route to a 46-48-94.
Trevor Zierke carded a 40-45-85 to add scoring power to Aukes' 81 for Blue Earth Area on Monday, while Zach Curtis and Derek Abel contributed a 44-44-88 and a 45-43-88, respectively.
Slater Peterson turned in a 43-48-90 for the Bucs, while Logan Jacobs chipped in a 44-47-91.
The Fairmont girls golfers face Mankato East at 2 p.m. today at North Links Golf Course in Mankato, the Blue Earth Area girls team plays at Mankato West at 2:45 p.m. today.
Both the Fairmont and Blue Earth Area boys lineups are idle until teeing off at the Section 2AA, Sub-Section Meet at 10 a.m. Tuesday, May 29, at North Links Golf Course in Mankato.
2012 SCC GOLF MEET
At St. James
Meet Day Girls Team Results: 1. Fairmont 365; 2. Blue Earth Area 378; 3. Waseca 383; 4. St. Peter 414; 5. New Ulm 442; 6. St. James 471.
Meet Day Individual Scores: 1. Lizzie Larson (F) 87; 2. Elizabeth Kim (F) 88; 3. Rachel Hoverstad (W) 91; 4. (tie) Natali Fellows (BEA) and Melissa Bartz (W) 92s; 6. (tie) Megan Rosol (F), Autumn Drake (BEA) and Katy Kuiper (SP) 93s; 9. Allie Curtis (BEA) 94; 10. Corinne McKeeth (NU) 96.
Other Fairmont Scores: Emily Splinter 97; Cayce Craig 110. Other B.E. Area Scores: Aeli Olson 99; Anna Aukes 100; Emily Davids 126.
Final Girls Team Standings: 1. Fairmont 22 points; 2. Blue Earth Area 18; 3. Waseca 14; 4. St. Peter 10; 5. (tie) St. James and New Ulm 4 each.
All-Conference Individuals (Top 10): 1. Lizzie Larson (F) 92 points; 2. Melissa Bartz (W) 89; 3. Megan Rosol (F) 88; 4. Autumn Drake (BEA) 86; 5. Katy Kuiper (SP) 85; 6. Allie Curtis (BEA) 79; 7. (tie) Natali Fellows (BEA) and Corinne McKeeth (NU) 78s; 9. Elizabeth Kim (F) 76; 10. Rachel Hoverstad (W) 74.
Meet Day Boys Team Results: 1. Waseca 312; 2. New Ulm 319; 3. Fairmont 333; 4. St. Peter 339; 5. Blue Earth Area 342; 6. St. James 378.
Meet Day Individual Scores: 1. Mitch DeKruif (W) 75; 2. Austin Snow (W) 76; 3. Kelton Schmitz (NU) 77; 4. (tie) Carter Welchlin (F), Cole Miller (SP) and Josh Kummerfeldt (W) 79s; 7. (tie) Andy Aukes (BEA) and Colin Huffman (NU) 81s; 9. (tie) Dylan Post (F), Matt Saffert (NU), Chad Poppen (SP) and Seth Dixon (W) 82s.
Other Fairmont Scores: Josh Baldus 84; Joe Nordquist 88; Ian Hasek 94; Cole Huinker 94. Other B.E. Area scores: Trevor Zierke 85; Derek Abel 88; Zach Curtis 88; Slater Peterson 90; Logan Jacobs 91.
Final Boys Team Standings: 1. Waseca 22 points; 2. New Ulm 18; 3. St. Peter 12; 4. Fairmont 10; 5. Blue Earth Area 8; 6. St. James 2.
All-Conference Individuals (Top 10): 1. Mitch DeKruif (W) 88 points; 2. Josh Kummerfeldt (W) 83; 3. Kelton Schmitz (NU) 82; 4. Andy Aukes (BEA) 82; 5. Austin Snow (W) 79; 6. Cole Miller (SP) 77; 7. Matt Saffert (NU) 75; 8. Carter Welchlin (F) 70; 9. Josh Baldus (F) 68; 10. Seth Dixon (W) 67.