Comets open season in Seymour
By Greg Seubert
By the time school starts Sept. 1, the Waupaca girls’ golf team will already have more than half of its season in the books.
That’s how it goes every year for the Comets, who will open the 2016 season Friday, Aug. 12, at the Seymour Invitational at Crystal Springs Golf Course.
About a dozen golfers showed up for coach Kellsey Schwantes Aug. 8 at the Waupaca Country Club for the team’s first practice at the Waupaca Country Club.
The Comets will host four matches this season, including a six-team invitational Tuesday, Aug. 16, and a pair of North Eastern Conference meets in August and September at the country club; and a WIAA regional meet Wednesday, Sept. 28, at Waupaca’s Foxfire Golf Club.
“Most of them have been out playing,” Schwantes said. “They run a junior golf program here at the country club that a few of them have been involved with. We’ll practice today and tomorrow and do nine holes of qualifying on Wednesday to see who’s going to play varsity on Friday. There are a couple of spots that are up in the air yet.”
Golfers spent five days in June and July preparing for the season.
“We spend our five contact days in the summer just like practice, so that kind of gets them going,” Schwantes said. “A lot of them will go out and actually play together before the season starts. Having our contact days and having open gyms during the winter really helped the girls come into the summer more prepared.
“This is my third year of coaching and we’re the most prepared going into the season,” she added. “We’ll have one or two open gyms a month where they’ll come in and hit balls in the nets. It’s something to keep them going through the winter months. It’s no different than any other sport.”
Returning golfers include juniors Markie Ash and Alana Radley. Ash placed 11th at a WIAA Division 1 sectional after finishing second at the Division 1 Kaukauna Regional. Three juniors, a sophomore and two freshmen round out the roster.
“We have some freshmen coming into the program that have some talent and some girls are going to be juniors that are playing for the first year and have some possibilities of going somewhere,” Schwantes said. “Most of these girls have never played before they started playing in high school.”
The Comets compete in the North Eastern Conference with Denmark, Fox Valley Lutheran, Freedom, Little Chute, Luxemburg-Casco, Marinette, Oconto Falls, Wrightstown.
“We switched to triangulars this year for our conference (matches), so we’ll actually play a full varsity squad and a full JV squad,” Schwantes said.
She expects Fox Valley Lutheran to be the team to beat in the conference this season. The Foxes have qualified for the last four state meets and finished third last year in Division 2.
“FVL won (the conference championship) last year,” she said. “I think they’ll stay strong, but as we get a little more experience and start shooting some good scores, we can be competitive.”
Waupaca Girls’ Golf 2016 Schedule
• Friday, Aug. 12 – at Seymour Invitational, Crystal Springs Golf Course, 9 a.m.
• Tuesday, Aug. 16 – Waupaca Invitational, Waupaca Country Club, 9 a.m.
• Thursday, Aug. 18 – vs. Denmark and Oconto Falls at River Island Golf Club, Oconto Falls, 10 a.m. (North Eastern Conference match)
• Friday, Aug. 19 – at Kaukauna Invitational, Countryside Golf Club, 8 a.m.
• Monday, Aug. 22 – at Marinette Invitational, Riverside Golf Club, Menominee, Mich., 10 a.m.
• Tuesday, Aug. 23 – vs. Little Chute and Wrightstown at Hilly Haven Golf Course, De Pere, 10 a.m. (North Eastern Conference match)
• Friday, Aug. 26 – vs. Denmark and Marinette at Twin Oaks Golf Club, Denmark, 8:30 a.m. (North Eastern Conference match)
• Monday, Aug. 29 – vs. Fox Valley Lutheran and Freedom at Waupaca Country Club, 4 p.m. (North Eastern Conference match)
• Friday, Sept. 9 – vs. Little Chute and Luxemburg-Casco at Waupaca Country Club, 4 p.m. (North Eastern Conference match)
• Tuesday, Sept. 13 – vs. Little Chute and Marinette at Little River Country Club, Marinette, 3 p.m. (North Eastern Conference match)
• Saturday, Sept. 17 – at Appleton West Invitational, Winagamie Golf Course, Neenah, 8:30 a.m.
• Wednesday, Sept. 21 – North Eastern Conference Meet at Wander Springs Golf Course, Greenleaf, 9 a.m.
• Friday, Sept. 23 – at Hartford Invitational, Hartford Golf Club, 8:30 a.m.
• Wednesday, Sept. 28 – WIAA Division 1 Regional at Foxfire Golf Club, Waupaca, 9 a.m.
• Monday, Oct. 3 – WIAA Division 1 Sectional at Royal Scot Golf Club, New Franken, TBA.