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Tournament Play, League Action For Golf Girls
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Escalon’s Ella Adams had a strong week on the links for the Lady Cougars, firing a round of 55 against Amador and 40 against Ripon. Marg Jackson/The Times

It was a hectic week for the Lady Cougars on the golf course, with the squad working hard to improve their game.

On Aug. 27, they played in the Merced Tournament at Merced Country Club.

“All six girls were able to play and finish 18 holes. Mikayla (Schut) is the only one that has played 18 holes before. This is a good tournament for them to get experience for when they play in the league tournaments,” coach Kristie Cathcart explained. “Most of them did not like their scores but they did good for their first time. Ella Adams had the low score for our team. We started at 9 a.m. and finished about 3:15 p.m. Long day, thankfully the weather was not too bad.”

Action on Aug. 28 saw the Lady Cougars taking on Amador in what ultimately turned out to be a forfeit win for Escalon on the road.

“This is Amador’s first year in the league and first match. They did not play the first week because they did not have all their players,” Cathcart said.

They thought they were going to have a full team and ended only having two players suit up for the match, so it was a forfeit victory on the books for the Lady Cougars.

“Their two girls had never played nine holes before this match,” Cathcart said.

With that in mind, the coach changed team strategy a little.

“I stressed to the girls to become familiar with the course so when we played Argonaut on the same course we could redeem ourselves and beat them on their course,” Cathcart said.

Low score for the day again came from Adams, who shot a 55. Schut was right behind at 56 and Ella MacKinnon came in at 57. Kara Kennedy and Sarah Abraham both shot a 60 and Sylvia Guevara rounded out the day with a 67.

“Ella and Ella played against the two Amador girls and the ‘older’ four played against each other,” said Cathcart. “If the scores would have mattered we would have shot a 228, which to guarantee a victory against Argonaut we still need to knock off a few strokes.”

Thursday, hosting Ripon, it was a two-stroke loss for the Lady Cougars, battling to a 165-167 final.

Ella Adams had a 40 to lead the team against the league rival; Abraham had a 41; Guevara, Schut and MacKinnon each came in at 43 and Kennedy had a 45 on the day.

“The girls played really well. We are getting better. Five strokes better than last match,” noted Cathcart. “It’s always disappointing to lose to Ripon, even worse when it’s so close.”

Progress is being made, though, as the squad is coming together a little bit more with each match.

“The girls get along really good and are starting to gain confidence in their ability. They had a long, busy week of playing golf,” Cathcart said.

The team was scheduled to travel to Phoenix Lakes to play Summerville on Tuesday, Sept. 4. Summerville went into the week tied for first place with four wins.

Escalon will be at home on Thursday, Sept. 6 against Sonora.

Cathcart said she was also able to set up a couple JV matches for the four freshmen, with their first match set for Wednesday, Sept. 5 against Hughson at Escalon.

“We will also be hosting our second JV tournament on Wednesday, Sept. 26. We hosted this last year and had about 25 girls,” Cathcart added. “They were able to play 18 holes, first nine from the white tees and second nine from the red tees. It was a great experience for the girls and gave them just a little taste of what it is like to play 18 holes.”

This year the team is hosting a putt-a-thon fundraiser on Tuesday, Sept 18. The players are currently looking for pledges. They will take 100 putts from 10 feet away. Sponsors can either pledge a flat rate or pledge per make. The program is looking to purchase push carts for each player and will utilize the funds raised through the putt-a-thon to help offset the purchase price.