Redskins end historic season at disricts

Sports Editor

The Wapakoneta Redskins saw their season end Tuesday during their first ever district tournament appearance, as they placed fifth out of six teams at the Division I Northwest District girls golf tournament at Stone Ridge Golf Club in Bowling Green.

The top two teams from Tuesday’s district tournament advanced to the state championships.

Wapak shot 399 as a team Tuesday.

In order to reach districts Tuesday, the Redskins advanced from the sectional tournament with a second-place finish Wednesday at Sycamore Springs Golf Course in Arlington.

“I couldn’t be more proud of our team,” Wapak varsity coach Dawn West said. “We have had a great run this season, a record-breaking season, but unfortunately for us it ended today at Stone Ridge. We went out there today worked hard and came up short. All five of the ladies who went to districts — Shelby, Zoe, Sierra, Emily and Haley — represented Wapakoneta well, fought hard all day long and never gave up.

“Now that we have had the taste of being so close to state, hopefully, it will continue to fuel us to work in the offseason so that we can have a chance to get back there again next year,” she said. “We are such a young team but I felt like we held our own out there with not a whole lot of experience to back us.”

Shelby Kohler paced the Redskins with an 89 on Tuesday.

“Shelby gave another great effort today,” West said Tuesday. “Unfortunately, her score does not show how well she really hit the ball all day long. I saw some excellent golf shots from her from tee to green. Holes No. 1 and No. 10 really hurt her score-wise. That was hard for her to come back from. However, she played mentally and physically tough from then on out to finish each side very respectably for an 89. She handled herself with great poise not only today but all season long.

Zoe Rayburn and Emily Klopfenstein followed with a 101 each. Haley Kinstle tallied a 108 to complete Wapak’s team score. Sierra Sammons shot a 110.

Tuesday was the final high school event for two Wapak seniors — Kohler and Rayburn.

“We have had two great seniors who will be sorely missed next year, in Shelby and Zoe,” West said. “It’s hard to believe they are done with their high school golfing career here at Wapak. They both are wonderful young ladies and we will miss them immensely.

“Their shoes will be hard to fill next year,” she said. “However, I have confidence in the ladies who are returning that they are ready for the challenge.”

In 2011 Kohler was the first player in Wapakoneta girls golf history to reach districts as a individual. She led the Redskins in all but three events this season.

“She is an excellent leader for us and role model for those she encounters,” West said of Kohler. “She has definitely left a legacy within our Wapakoneta golf program for those to follow and build upon.”

Wapak finished its regular season with a 14-5 record this year.

“This team has a very unique and special bond,” West said. “All the girls, not just the five who went to districts, care genuinely for each other both on and off the golf course and will do anything for each other. That is part of what made our season so great.

“When a team gets along so well, the motivation comes from within each one of them on their own without any say from coaches about working hard and practicing what needs to be done,” she said.