Surprise victory for STM
LeRoy's Marcum, GCMS' Spangler advance; so does Dombroski in 2A
URBANA – With a young, inexperienced team this fall, St. Thomas More coach Pat Hetterman didn't know what to expect this golf season.
How about what she's grown accustomed to in her time with the Sabers – another trip to the state finals.
On another cold and wet day, the Sabers got an 88 from Alexis Freund and an 89 Kelsey Gallivan and rode the duo to their third sectional crown in four years and their fourth trip to the state finals in the seven-year history of the program.
"This team has surprised me more than any other team," said Hetterman, who has led the Sabers to two runner-up finishes and a third-place finish in their previous trips. "We are very inexperienced. We are very, very young, and at the beginning of the season I knew we were going to win matches but I didn't think they would pull it together as well as they've done."
St. Thomas More finished 8 strokes better than second-place Bloomington Central Catholic at Stone Creek on Monday. The Sabers' team score of 366 was the top sectional score among the four that were played. The Anna-Jonesboro sectional will be played today and Hetterman said she expects a low score to come from that site.
Besides Freund and Gallivan, the Sabers got a 94 from Megan Deedrich and a 95 from Claire Dabrowski, the team's lone senior in the rotation.
"Claire Dabrowski, who kind of plays the No. 5, No. 6 spot, really came through very nicely for us and I was extremely happy with her 95 today," Hetterman said. "Alexis Freund really stepped up, she was 10 strokes better than her regional score and that was huge. Kelsey Gallivan was just as steady and dependable – she was the one knocking down birdies, so she really stepped it up on the back nine. Megan Deedrich came through, too, they all did."
LeRoy's Molly Marcum (91) and Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley's Emily Spangler (91) both advanced as individuals to this weekend's state finals at Crab Orchard in Carterville.
At Swansea. Centennial's Lizzy Dombroski will be the area's lone representative in the Class 2A finals in Carbondale this weekend. The junior carded an 81 to nab one of the individual slots. The Chargers finished eighth as a team at Clinton Hill. Mahomet-Seymour finished ninth.