St. Thomas More's Jean hitting her stride
URBANA – Katie Jean is a Cubs fan. The St. Thomas More senior golfer wears a Titleist cap with the logo of the Lovable Losers stitched into the side of it during her rounds.
Good thing for Jean and her St. Thomas More teammates she doesn't fall victim to curses or collapses when the postseason rolls around like her favorite team does.
"I'd like to think I'm better (in the postseason) than the Cubs," Jean said after shooting a 2-under- par 70 to win medalist honors at the Class 1A girls' golf regional Wednesday at Stone Creek. "I'm still wearing the hat. The Cubs were bad, but I'll still wear it."
The Sabers ran away with the team title, and Jean was far and away the best player on the wet and windy course Wednesday.
She was happy with her round but not thrilled. At one point she was at 4 under par but made four bogeys on the back nine.
"You can't really complain with a 70, but it should have been better," Jean said. "I didn't finish very well. I just had a couple of bad swings and missed a short putt. But 2 under par is pretty good."
Wednesday was just the start of what Jean hopes is a run to the Class 1A state title for her team and for herself. The Sabers finished second to Effingham St. Anthony last year, and Jean shot a 154 over 36 holes to finish fourth individually.
"She's just out there playing," STM coach Pat Hettermann said. "She's worked hard, she's improved tremendously and she wants to be No. 1, and she's going to work for it."
Despite the lofty expectations being placed upon her, Jean is playing with a refreshing level of confidence at the right time of the season.
"I feel pressure, but it's mainly from myself," Jean said. "I'm expecting to win state, and after last week, I shot a 79 and I was a little disappointed. I said, 'I can't expect to win state playing like that.'
"After today I'm a little bit more confident, and it's good going into the sectionals. Hopefully I can carry this over. If I play well, finish well and minimize the few mistakes I made today, I'm confident I can shoot pretty well."