Mineral Wells Index
By CLINT FOSTER
BAIRD – The Santo Ladycats golf team ended their season on a positive note last week, battling the elements to play some of their best golf of the season en route to an eighth place finish at the Region 2-1A Tournament at Shady Oaks Golf Course in Baird.
Head coach Tony Raffaele said he was very proud of his team that played their best on the big stage, despite "brutally cold" temperatures and strong winds, specifically on the first day of tournament play.
The Ladycats' team of Jaci Trotter, Reagan Raffaele, Lindsey Sams, Emily Ashbrook and Makaylee Steiner combined to score 849 through two rounds of tournament play. Three girls saw their scores improve from the first day to the second.
It is such marked improvement, coach Raffaele said, that has typified the Ladycats' 2014 season.
"We have several first-year participants and they improved leaps and bounds," he said. "We played our best at regionals... and with some more practice, we should have a chance to finish higher next year."
Trotter was the class of Santo's golf squad, leading her team with a final score of 178 – just eight shots shy of qualifying for the state tournament.
She shot a 94 in the first round and shaved her score by 10 in the second round at 84 to give Santo its lowest total.
"Jaci will be looking to punch her ticket to state next year," Raffaele said.
Second on Santo's team was Steiner, who shot rounds of 108 and 115 for a total of 223. She was followed by Ashbrook with rounds of 107 and 123 for a total of 230 and coach's daughter Reagan Raffaele, whose scores of 124 and 109 netted her a total score of 233 – good enough for fourth place on the team.
Sams rounded out the Ladycats' roster with a final score of 237. However, she showed drastic improvement from the first to the second round, following a 129 score with a 108 to finish competition.
As a whole the Ladycats lowered their team score by 17 shot between the first and second round.
Winners at the regional tournament were Paducah, which finished third with a 767, Muenster, which was named runner-up also with 767, and Hamlin, which won the tournament with a 762.