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October 17, 2012

Grosse Pointe South, North advance at regional; state finals are next

By Mark Vest
C & G Sports Writer

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Grosse Pointe South, North advance at regional; state finals are next
South’s Lily Pendy fired a 77 at a regional tournament at the Dearborn Country Club last week. Pendy and her teammates finished second in the tournament, earning the right to advance to the state finals.

The Grosse Pointe South girls golf team finished second in the regional tournament played at the Dearborn Country Club Oct. 12.

The Blue Devils shot 338, which was bested by Utica’s score of 331. According to first-year South coach Mike Rennell, those two scores were the best posted in any regional in the state.

Lily Pendy shot a score of 77 for 18 holes to help lead South. She was followed by teammates Tenley Shield, Hannah Buzolits, Katie Dalman and Katie Motschall.

Their finish means that the Blue Devils are headed back to the state finals, where they will attempt to defend the state championship they won last year.

“We had a great day on the golf course,” Rennell said. “We left a few shots on the course, but you always do. The girls hung in there. They played tough; they played smart. We’re just glad to be advancing on.”

Rennell has one goal for his team — win.

And given the precedent that has already been set, as far as Rennell is concerned, that means one thing.

“We won the state last year, so we set our goals to try to do a repeat of that,” he said. “Every time we get on the course, our ambition is to win. That’s our goal. We still have our best day out on the golf course — we’re still looking for that day.”

According to Rennell, Buzolits, Motschall, Pendy, Shield and Dalman have each played a part in South’s success.

“Girls have been terrific,” he said. “And this year, it’s been a whole team effort. We’ve had matches where our top two girls played excellent and put us into the top, and we’ve had rounds where our top two girls didn’t play so well, and our third and fourth girls rose to the occasion. We got a great group of girls — all capable of going low at different times. We’re hoping at states that they all decide to go low on the same two dates.”

Regardless of how things turn out at the state finals, Rennell’s ambition is to set the Blue Devils up for long-term success. With four freshmen on South’s squad, it is Rennell’s hope that within the next two years, they will all be in a position to offer major contributions to the team.

“We’ve got a pretty strong returning crew for next year, so we hope to be strong for the next couple years, at least,” said. “That’s the difference between a team that has a few good players and a team that has a program. We’re trying to develop a program that’s going to be long-lasting. I’ve got to develop those young players and try to bring them up.”

South is scheduled to tee off at the state finals Oct. 19-20 at Forest Acres East on the campus of Michigan State University.

In other local golf action:
Grosse Pointe North’s golf team also qualified for the state finals after finishing with a score of 376 at a regional tournament at the Pontiac Country Club, which was good enough for third place.

Alli Scoggin led the way after firing a 90. Teammates Madison Vens, Paige Micks, Jenna Paglino and Jordyn Parent round out the qualifiers.

North will begin its quest for state title Oct. 19-20 at the Meadows Golf Course, located on the campus of Grand Valley State University.

You can reach C & G Sports Writer Mark Vest at mvest@candgnews.com or at (586)279-1112. Twitter Follow Mark on Twitter.