Holton Girls Golf Preview 2020
This year’s three-member girls golf team at Holton High School may be small in number, just as it was last year, but Head Coach Connor Bechard recognizes it as being big on talent.
“We have three girls who played a JV/varsity schedule last year,” said Coach Bechard, currently in his second year of leading the team. “We saw some great improvements throughout the season, and two of our girls narrowly missed qualifying for the state tournament as individuals last year.”
At last year’s regional tournament in Garnett, Olivia McAsey came up just two strokes short of qualifying for the state tournament, while Katina Bartel missed it by four.
This year, Bechard believes McAsey, a senior, and Bartel, a junior, have the potential to go farther, as does junior Lilly Kimberlin, who rounds out the three-person team.
“The biggest key for most high school golfers is improving from 100 yards and in,” he said. “Being able to limit the number of three-putts on the greens, limiting poor chip shots and emphasizing the importance of every shot in our short game is vital to improvement and potentially earning a spot at the state tournament.”
Bechard said his team and other girls’ golf teams this fall will face another significant challenge — COVID-19 — that will likely have an effect on this year’s team schedules, but what that effect will be remains unknown.
In the meantime, he and his team members will undergo temperature checks and other measures related to keeping the coronavirus at bay prior to practices and meets.
“Golf is a sport that allows us to easily organize being physically distant for practice and competition, so a general awareness is the most important part of this new season,” Bechard said. “The girls will have their own water bottles, they will not share clubs or golf balls and they will maintain six feet of spacing when possible.”
The first scheduled meet of the 2020 season is a Tuesday, Aug. 25 junior varsity meet at Paola, starting at 3 p.m., it was reported.