For a pair of local high school golfers, Thursday was an enjoyable tour around Plainwell’s Lake Doster Golf Club. As a result, they’ll get to stroll around The Meadows next weekend.
Three Rivers’ Holly Hines shot 12-over-par 84 to win the Division 3 regional at Plainwell and Sturgis’ Jessica Griffioen admittedly shot out of her mind (88) to finish tied for third and earn a spot in the championship field.
For Hines, who has run out of fingers to count her tournament victories this season, the round included a chip-in birdie at No. 8 and up-and-down iron play.
“I really didn’t play as well as I wanted to today,” the senior said. “I was off on my irons and didn’t get on greens in regulation, which hurt. I was really nervous for this match knowing that this is the tournament that gets you to state. Now that I know I’m going to state, I’m going all out and not holding anything back. This is my time to shine and win state, so I am very determined to work hard this upcoming week on the things I struggled with today.”
Griffioen shaved seven strokes off her previous career-low round for 18 holes. The sophomore played Lake Doster Sunday for the first time in a practice round and felt like she had a solid plan off attack heading into today’s outing. Still, the card she signed at the clubhouse was a surprise.
“I totally went into today expecting to hit in the high 90s, low 100s,” she said. “But for some reason everything felt like it just clicked today. All my drives were dead-on, my irons were really good and my short game was actually spot-on today.”
Knowing she was on pace to shatter a personal record didn’t distract Griffioen in her first regional tournament.
“I didn’t put any pressure on myself because I never really expected to qualify,” she explained. “I just wanted to do my best, play my game, play smart and I just ended up shooting a really good score.
Jackson Northwestern finished first with 371, followed by Marshall (380) and Coldwater (390). The top-three schools and top-three individuals not on a qualifying team advanced to next week’s finals at Grand Valley State University’s home course.
Plainwell shot 404 for fourth place, Three Rivers was fifth (411) and Sturgis (459) placed 11th out of 15 teams.
Three Rivers’ Brittany Klinger carded 97 and both Anna Ochsenrider and Emma Conroy penciled in 115. Callan McLeod finished with 126. Sturgis’s Taylor Williams shot 120, Allison Harker posted 122, Hannah Millard shot 129 and Allison Herman finished with 143.