2019 WIAA state tournaments | Team qualifiers
|Madison Edgewood||22nd||2018||1st-2018, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2009, 2008,
2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001
|Osseo-Fairchild/Fall Creek||10th||2014||2nd-2004, 2003||403|
|St. Croix Central||2nd||2003||5th-2003||395|
2019 WIAA Division 2 state girls golf tournament | Individual qualifiers
|Arcadia/Independence||Rylee Haines, Sr.||3rd||2018||T18-2016 state||95|
|Cambridge||Mary Hommen, Sr.||1st||NA||T17-2018 regional||89|
|Colfax||Abby DeMoe, Sr.||4th||2018||T13-2018 state||90|
|Ellsworth||Holly Carlson||1st||NA||T11-2018 sectional||86|
|Freedom||Callie Berg||1st||NA||T8-2018 sectional||83|
|Lakeside Lutheran||Ava Heckmann, Fr.||1st||NA||NA||91|
|Lakeside Lutheran||Maya Heckmann, Jr.||2nd||2018||T12-2018 state||88|
|Maple Northwestern||Kiernan Smith, Sr.||2nd||2018||7th-2018 state||87|
|Somerset||Haley Myers, Sr.||3rd||2018||T13-2018 state||88|
Monday: 8:50 a.m. (off No. 1). Tuesday: 8:50 a.m. (off No. 10).
Wake the kids, Tweet the neighbors: Breakthrough rounds from pair of sophomores fuel Madison Edgewood's 14th WIAA state title
Coach Peggy Gierhart was combing social media late Tuesday afternoon as she got set to leave University Ridge Golf Course and join her Madison Edgewood girls golf team at Buffalo Wild Wings for another state championship celebration.
She laughed when asked to imagine what it would have been like had Twitter been around in 2001 when the Crusaders won their first WIAA state title. (It wouldn't appear on the scene until 2006, after they had won their fifth.)
Life moves at a much faster pace these days and Edgewood's wacky WIAA postseason journey these last three weeks showed how quickly things can turn. Three weeks after four scores of 93 were enough for the Crusaders to come home from Prairie du Chien with a regional title, a pair of career rounds from two emerging sophomores got them to B-Dubs with a state title.
Caitlyn Hegenbarth shot 75 and Grace Jaeger shot 76 as Edgewood shot 326 and extended its WIAA record of state girls golf championships to 14 with a 60-stroke victory over Appleton Xavier. It marked the Crusaders' first state title since 2014 when a 75 from state runner-up Caroline Lake and a 76 from state champion Tess Hackworthy during the final round got the job done.
"It was pretty wild; I just couldn't believe it," Gierhart said after Jaeger (82-76) and Grace Welch (78-80) tied for third and Hegenbarth (84-75) finished fifth behind champion Clair Phakamad of Appleton Xavier (78-74) to lead the way on a remarkable final day. "They started out well and we don't usually start out well so it's kind of like 'OK, this is nice.' And they kept it going and kept it going. My (Nos.) 2 and 4 ... (shot) their career rounds and it was just super fun. This is our team low this year by a lot and to have it here at University Ridge was just icing on the cake."
Starting on No. 10 in the shotgun start, Hegenbarth birdied Nos 11 and 18 around bogeys at Nos. 14 and 16 to make the turn in even-par 36. She got to 1-under with a birdie at No. 4 before playing her final four holes in 3-over.
"(Monday) after my round, I went to the range and worked on some stuff that wasn't too good the other day," Hegenbarth said. "(Tuesday), my mental game was much better and I managed to keep the ball in the fairway."
Attitude was everything again Tuesday for Jaeger, who started on No. 11, bogeyed No. 12 and birdied No. 16 to make the eight-hole turn in even-par. She bounced back from bogeys at Nos. 2 and 4 with birdies at Nos. 5 and 6 before running out of gas and playing her final four holes in 4-over.
"(Monday), I had a great mental state and (Tuesday) was just even better," Jaeger said. "I was hitting everything straight and where I wanted to pretty much. I missed a few putts, but overall it was just a great day."
It was such a great day that, at one point, Gierhart wished aloud that the season was just starting, instead of just ending.
"There was very little experience on our team beyond Grace (Welch) as far as tournament experience," Gierhart said. "They're young. So I think, because of that, it was a very special title because of how far they've come. I mean some of these girls were shooting in the 100s at the beginning of the year. To break 80 is a huge difference. It's a long season and the more you play the better you get."
But it's all good. All five Crusaders who came to University Ridge — and left for wings — will be back next fall.
Madison Edgewood looks to keep its distance from the pack in pursuit of 15th WIAA state girls golf championship.
Madison Edgewood's state championship history
|2014||659||Fox Valley Luth.||715||56|
|2013||681||Fox Valley Luth.||702||21|
|2006||667||St. Croix Falls||691||24|
|2005||720||St. Croix Falls||748||28|
|* =||Single division|
More often than not, it's not a matter of whether Madison Edgewood will win another WIAA Division 2 state championship. It a matter of by how much.
In winning a WIAA girls state-record 14 titles, the Crusaders have won by as few as one stroke (the screams around the ninth green after the final hole was completed in 2012 still echo through University Ridge). They have won by as many as 120 strokes (in 2008, the year they set the all-divisions scoring record with a 617 total).
Edgewood's average margin of victory during the 14 years in which it has hoisted the gold trophy is 51.14. And it's shaping up to be that kind of coronation again Monday and Tuesday at University Ridge GC.
The Crusaders' 351 winning score Tuesday on a long, tricky course at Prairie du Chien Country Club was the lowest in Division 2 by 36 strokes. Not too shabby considering the score was significantly higher than its 333-326 card over 36 holes at the 2018 WIAA Division 2 state championship with largely the same team.
That leaves the battle for the silver trophy to be the one with the most mystery.
Appleton Xavier, the state runner-up to Edgewood by 50 strokes a year ago despite having the medalist in Clair Phakamad (78-74), brings back the most experience among Edgewood's pursuers. Juniors Lauren Haen, who tied for eighth a year ago, and Kate Bernecker, who tied for 19th, lead the way for the Hawks, who placed their four scoring golfers in the top 12 at the sectional they hosted Monday at Ridgeway CC in Neenah and all five golfers in the top 18.
Prescott, making its state debut, and Osseo-Fairchild/Fall Creek, back for the first time since 2014, are the two teams mostly likely to challenge Xavier for runner-up honors. Both have strong No. 1 golfers — Prescott in freshman Ava Salay and OF/FC in senior Ariel Heuer, a two-time sectional qualifier on the Fall Creek — but both are making their state tournament debuts.
Individually, Edgewood looks to have strong candidate for its fifth state champion and first since current University of Wisconsin golfer Tess Hackworthy prevailed in 2014.
Senior Grace Welch will be making her fourth state tournament appearance, looking for her first state title after three top-five finishes. The UW-Green Bay recruit finished third in 2016 with scores of 83-81, fifth in 2017 with scores of 80-86 and tied for third a year ago with teammate Grace Jaeger with scores of 78-80.
Jaeger and fellow junior teammate Caitlyn Hegenbarth join Maple Northwestern senior Kiernan Smith (seventh a year ago) and Xavier's Haen (tied for eighth) as the top returning finishers from the 2018 championship. Smith, the only individual qualifier among the medalist hopefuls, will be paired in Monday's first round with OF/FC's Heuer and other No. 1 golfers from St. Croix Central and Wrightstown in the last group of the first wave while Salay will play with Hegenbarth and the No. 2s in the second wave and Haen will play with Welch and other No. 1s one group later.
Projected top three teams
1) Madison Edgewood; 2) Appleton Xavier; 3) Prescott.
Projected top three individuals
1) Grace Welch, Madison Edgewood; 2) Ava Salay, Prescott; 3) Caitlyn Hegenbarth, Madison Edgewood.