Girls golf wins state title, sets record

Trevians set team and individual records for state of Illinois

Lexi Shoup

The New Trier golf team finished first at the Class AA girls golf state champions in Decatur on Saturday Oct. 13, with junior Penelope Tir winning the individual state title.

New Trier had a 36-hole score of 603, giving them a ten stroke lead over Barrington’s 613, and setting a state record in the process. Tir’s individual two-day score of 144, even par, won her the individual title.

The Trevs had tough competition going into the twelve team tournament, “I would have to say there were three other schools that were very strong this year: Barrington, St. Charles North, and Hinsdale Central,” said long time varsity head coach Scott Fricke. “We went into it thinking we had a chance to win. This is one of the strongest teams that New Trier has ever had, and we felt confident but we also knew that there were very strong teams down there.”

The tournament was split over two days, 18 holes each day. Each of the six golfers plays the course and the top four individual scores are taken and added up to compose the team’s score for that day. The cumulative score for each day is added to get the team’s final score for the tournament, “We shot a 303 day one and a 300 day two, combined to make a 603 which was the state record. We were the best team in girls golf history in the state of Illinois,” said JV head coach Andy Horne.

Senior golfer Rachel Rhee said, “Going into the second day, the team all knew that we had a lead. We still knew we had to play our best to finish it off and so we were extremely happy to know that we won. Almost all of the girls have been down at state before and we’ve had our chances at winning but this year we were all playing great golf. Even though nerves set in because of state, all of us knew our game and swing and we went there and tried our hardest, and ended up succeeding.”

Junior Penelope Tir was the individual state champion, she shot an even par score after getting a 73 on Friday and a 71 on Saturday for a total score of 144. The coaches and players were focused on the team score until Tir’s birdie.

on the 17th hole, “Once she hit the 17th hole she took a lead individually and that’s when I thought OK she could possibly win now,” said Fricke. “I don’t know if even she knew at that time but I think she had a feeling she was right there in contention. That putt that she drained for birdie on 17 was the difference,” said Horne.

Tir’s key to success was not getting too overconfident, “I was confident in my and my teammates abilities to score well, but I made sure that I wasn’t too confident so that I could focus on my own game and not get ahead of myself.”

Most of the six girls at the tournament have been playing together for years, “My sister and I have been playing golf since we both started, and I’ve known Rachel, Abbie, Lizzie and Megan for quite a long time as well. Being on this team together since freshman year has helped us grow closer and better together,” said Tir. “This year, we put sleep as our first priority, and I could see through this that my team really wanted to win the tournament. It motivated me to post a good score so that we could share in the victory together.”

The girls have learned that they count on each other as teammates and as friends, “We could really rely on our teammates to have our back if we had a bad day. If someone wasn’t playing their best, we had other players that were playing better,” said senior Megan Gabor.

Four of the six girls that were at state will be returning next year, juniors Lizzie Kenter, Abbie Kaestle, Penelope Tir, and freshman Audrey Tir.

The golf team had a successful season, “we won a lot of tournaments, we won our conference by going undefeated, we won the regional, and we won the sectional. So those were all big tournaments going into the actual State in Decatur,” said Rhee.

Fricke is grateful for the attention winning state has brought to the team, “I have been really surprised at the support we’ve gotten from the school and from the community after winning this. It’s been great, on Winnetka avenue there’s a big sign that says golf state champs. They have our trophy displayed outside the athletic director’s office with pictures and then we’ve gotten a lot of press.”

The coaches are looking forward to competitive years to come, “A lot of the schools that competed with us have a lot of people coming back too so it’s going to be a very strong year for girls golf, we’re looking forward to it,” said Fricke.

Horne said, “We had a really nice group of freshman golfers come in as well so there’s some good young talent I think that we’ve got and hopefully we can find a way to defend our title. It will remain competitive for sure in the years to come.”