With snow still on the ground as the 2022-23 Lennox High School girls’ golf season got underway, practice had to begin indoors.
Fortunately, for the LHS athletes, they were able to make use of the golf simulator in the LWC Intermediate School.
The simulator was made possible thanks to financial donations received from The Good Times Boys Golf Tournament which is held each year, The Booster Club and numerous family and friends.
LHS head girls’ golf coach, Angela Zirpel, along with LHS boys’ head golf coach, Cody Lutes, and the entire girls’ team is very thankful for simulator.
One of the keys to the girls’ golf season, in Coach Zirpel’s opinion, is adjusting to the ever changing weather and the simulator plays a big part in helping the golfers prepare when the weather in uncertain.
This season the LHS girls began inside on the simulator and were able to get one practice in at the golf course before competing in the first meet of the season last Tuesday, Apr. 11 in Beresford.
For the Orioles, Ashlee Sweeter led the varsity with a score of 51. Jazlyn Gayle shot a 56, and Katelyn Vargas a 62.
For the Junior Varsity, Izzy Vargas shot a 66, Catie Sherard a 76, Adelynn Stucky a 77, Olivia Homan an 81 and Kaydence Gerry an 84.
Dakota Valley’s Lexi Squier won the varsity with a score of 40. Jacee Squier of Dakota Valley won the JV with a score of 55.
The LHS team competed in a dual on Thursday, Apr. 13 against Sioux Falls Christian.
Sweeter led the varsity once again with a 43 on the day. K. Vargas shot a 54 and Gayle finished with a 59. For the JV, I. Vargas finished with a 63, Stucky a 75, Sherard a 75 and Gerry an 87.
The meet was won by a Sioux Falls Christian golfer who finished with a 42.
The LHS golfers were scheduled to host a Quad on Tuesday, Apr. 18 and will be at Elk Point on Thursday, Apr. 20. They will be back home Friday, Apr. 21.
Despite the small number of golfers this season, Coach Zirpel is still expecting big things.
“I’m very optimistic this year. I have a group of strong returning golfers who are taking the lead to educate the new golfers,” said Zirpel. “All players are showing a strong desire to play their best and work hard to accomplish goals.”
The team features nine golfers, with four of them seventh graders. The team welcomes back Courtney Sandal, Sweeter, Gayle, and both K. Vargas and I. Vargas. The Orioles will be without Jada Severson and Gracie Dose, both of whom graduated last spring.
But the returning experience will be beneficial.
“Both Courtney and Ashlee have experienced State Tournaments and are excited about the season,” said Zirpel who enters her 11th year as head coach.
Sandal is the lone senior on this year’s team. Sweeter, who made it to State last season, anchors three juniors on the team that also include Gayle and K. Vargas. I. Vargas is the lone freshman and Stucky, Sherard, Homan, and Gerry are the four seventh graders who are new to the sport.