Girls' Golf Coach of Year: Monticello's Chris Townsend

Why he’s Coach of the Year: The 20th-year coach guided the Sages to the school’s first regional and sectional championships in girls’ golf. Monticello placed 11th in the Class 1A state meet.

Season highlights: The Sages rewrote the school record book. The team set the nine-hole standard with a 176 (22 shots better than the previous mark) and established an 18-hole record several times, winding up at 359. It was 419 entering the season. Individually, senior Evelyn Brand set nine-hole (35), 18-hole (74) and season average (41.3) records. “I enjoyed the seniors’ success, especially after going winless their freshman year, working with Coach (Chad) McFarland, who provided a wealth of experience and enthusiasm, and working with a great group of parents, who made every effort to make the season special,” Townsend said.

A few of my favorite things: Pizza at Filippo’s and Monical’s ... last text to my wife, Kristi ... first job was walking beans my freshman year in high school ... role models are my parents, who never went to college but valued education and put six kids through college ... a 2010 Nissan Frontier ... Three Ravens ... Little Feat ... Steve Stricker or any ex-Illini playing in a tournament ... “Modern Family” and “Parenthood” ... “Final Rounds,” written by James Dodson ... if I weren’t teaching and coaching, I would love to caddy on any tour ... On my bucket list, play Pebble Beach, lots of grandchildren and a state championship in golf.

About Coach Townsend: “He is different from other coaches. He doesn’t yell or get upset when we are not playing up to our capabilities, but instead he is calm and keeps encouraging you until the end. He has the ability to pull you out of your negative mind-set and build up confidence again so that you finish strong. He stood by the team’s side when we lost every single match (in 2010) and never gave up on us. That bond he created with us helped the team grow, and together we had the most successful season in our school’s history. I’m going to miss having him as a coach.” — Evelyn Brand, Monticello golfer.

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