Massac County's Millie Lawson watches her tee shot on the first hole during the 1A Girls Golf Regional at the Union County Country Club on Oct. 4 in Anna.

Massac County and Nashville will by vying for a team trophy at the Class 1A girls state golf meet at Red Tail Run Golf Course in Decatur this weekend. No Southern Illinois teams qualified in boys golf this year.

The Patriots and Hornets placed first and second at the Alton Marquette Sectional Monday.

Massac County won the sectional by 16 strokes, carding 336 as compared to Nashville’s 352. The Hornets finished second in Class A last year while Massac County was fourth.

Both teams have plenty of experience returning. Rachael Kell, Brooke Bartling, Hope Rueter, and Jordan Stiegman all competed for Nashville last year. Massac County returns Millie Lawson, Mady Blair, Emma Korte, Maddie Coakley and Lauren Coakley.

Lawson was the sectional medalist.

“The good thing is, every girl was there last year,” said Massac County coach Laurie Glass. “They’ve all played it. Everyone but two of them have been there twice and played that course.

“We’ve played a lot of hard courses this year. We played a lot of tournaments. I think it’s paid off. We might have had some big scores, but when you play those courses you’re not intimidated.”

That experience should allow the Patriots to be relaxed on the first tee box.

“These girls just have fun,” Glass said. “They wear me out they have so much fun.”

Several other Southern Illinoisans could compete for individual honors at state. Only three players shot in the 70s at the sectiona – Lawson, Megan Breslin of Pinckneyville (77) and Hamilton County’s Kylee Vaughan (79).

Also competing as individuals will be Carbondale’s Josie Sykes, Sarah Breslin of Pinckneyville, Avery Rea of Carterville and Murphysboro’s Hannah Gahagan.

Southern Illinois will send five competitors to the Class A boys state tournament. The tournament will be held at Bloomington’s Prairie Vista Golf Club.

Austyn Downen of Hamilton County shot a 74 at Carlyle’s Governor’s Run Monday. He finished third overall. Downen was one of just eight players to shoot in the 70s.

The other four area qualfiers all finished at 80: Ryan Naile of Trico, Levi Hall of Anna-Jonesboro, Ty Barbre of Carmi and Fairfield’s Andrew Stewart.

Finally, in Class 2A four individuals advanced. The 2A tournament will be held at Weibring Golf Club in Normal.

Mount Vernon’s Zach Williams took medalist honors at the Salem Sectional, finishing at 70. Also advancing are Zach Pereira of Carbondale, Caleb Urshan of Centralia and Brock Wilmes of Massac County.

The state tournaments are 36 holes and conclude Saturday.



On Twitter: @LesWinkeler​


Les Winkeler is sports editor and outdoors writer for The Southern Illinoisan.

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