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Sidelines: State golf tourney this weekend



The Blade/Amy E. Voigt
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Four local teams and three individual qualifiers from the area will compete in the boys and girls state golf tournaments starting at 8:30 a.m. tomorrow and Saturday at Ohio State University.

Notre Dame and St. Ursula, who placed first and second, respectively, in both the sectional and district tournaments, will join the 12-team field at the 15th annual state girls tournament, scheduled for OSU's Gray Course.

Also competing as individuals will be the daughters of two coaches. Junior Caroline Powers of Bowling Green is expected to make a strong challenge for medal honors in the 36-hole event. She placed first with duplicate 68s at both the sectional and district tournaments.

During the regular season, Powers was the regular No. 3 player on coach Chris Dill's BG boys team, a lofty spot considering that the Northern Lakes League champion Bobcats have advanced to the Division I state boys tournament along with City League runner-up St. John's Jesuit.

Powers, who had to pick between the boys and girls tournaments, is coached by her father, former Bowling Green State University hockey coach Buddy Powers.

The other area individual girls competitor will be Findlay senior Kaitlyn VanGunten, who is coached by her father, Ray.

Notre Dame, which is making its second straight state appearance and 10th overall, won the first Ohio girls title in 1993, and followed with state championships in 1996 and 1998. Last year the Eagles placed 12th in the 12-team field while St. Ursula took eighth.

Eagles coach Dan Lancaster returns three players who competed at state last year - seniors Heather Jorgensen and Emily Gedert, and sophomore Molly Sterling. Seniors Athena Smolka and Gina Dannibale round out this year's five-player lineup at state.

Jorgensen (39 nine-hole average) was the City League tournament medalist with a two-round (79-71) 150 for the Eagles, who placed second in the CL tourney. She is Notre Dame's No. 1 player. Gedert's 78 was the top score at the sectional, and Smolka matched Jorgensen's 78 at last week's district.

A runner-up by three shots to St. Ursula in the CL tourney, Notre Dame topped the Arrows in both sectional and district play. St. Ursula is making its fifth straight trip to state and eighth in the last nine years. The Arrows best finish was a runner-up spot in 1999.

Leading the Arrows are seniors Ashley Garrison and Nicole Momsen, who shot 77 and 85, respectively, in district play. Garrison also topped ND in the CL tournament with a 76-76-152. Senior Lisa Kitzler joined Garrison and Momsen in the Arrows' state lineup last year. Rounding out this year's group are junior Alex Fuller and sophomore Megan McKernan.

On the boys' side, St. John's returns to the D-I state tournament for the second straight year after placing second to St. Francis in the City League.

The Titan lineup includes seniors Aaron Koonce, Joe

Kontak and Les Crawford, junior Alan Kolovich, and freshman Michael Balcar. Koonce and Kolovich have the top 18-hole scoring averages at 77 and 78,

respectively, and all three seniors earned first-team All-CL honors. Kontak was low man for the winning Titans at sectionals with a 75, and Balcar's 71 was best for first-place St. John's at last week's district event at Red Hawk Golf Course in Findlay.

Bowling Green, which was second at the Huron sectional and second to St. John's at Red Hawk, is making its third trip to state in five years.

Senior Jaryd Mossing is joined by juniors Kyle Labardee, Brooks Gardner and Collin Hoops, and sophomore Tim Brandon. Labardee, the Bobcats' No. 1 player, paced the NLL title run with a second-place 72 at the league tourney, and topped BG with a 75 at sectionals. Gardner was low player at the district with a 78.

The lone individual state qualifier from the area is Southview junior Tim Hausfeld, who was the NLL tourney medalist with a 69 and placed second in the district event with a 76.

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