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Apaches knock off Tigers to continue busy week

Wabash's Bella Carrillo putts the ball on hole No. 9 during Tuesday's Huntington North Invitational.

BY JACOB RUDE - sports@wabashplaindealer.com

After spending last season as the newcomers, the Wabash girls’ golf team is ready to contend this fall.

The Apaches opened the season at Huntington North on Tuesday where they improved their score from last season by 37 strokes. On Tuesday, the Apaches continued that strong play by carding a 193 in a dual meet against Peru at Rock Hollow Golf Course to best the Tigers by six strokes.

“The beginning of the golf season is always a little crazy, two practices and then a bunch of matches but our girls came out ready to play,” head coach Tyler Olson said. “They competed with some really good teams at the Huntington North Invite and beat last year's score by 37 strokes. It goes back to the time and effort they put in during the summer. I enjoy seeing them rewarded for their hard work.”

After placing inside the top ten at the Huntington North Invitational as an individual, Annie Cole led the Apaches again on Tuesday with a score of 45. Bella Carrillo, who qualified for the regional last fall as an individual, fired a 48 to follow Cole. Halle Miller and Lindsey Mattern wrapped up the scoring with a 49 and 51, respectively. Corrine Kugler (68) and Aubrey Till (67) also compete for Wabash on the evening

All six golfers who competed on Tuesday are returnees from last season, offering Olson and the Apaches a chance to start ahead of the curve this fall.

“We talked during our first practice how that experience lets us build on the past, and we can work more on course management and understanding how we react to certain situations,” Olson said. “As a coach, I can have more in-depth conversations with the players during the round.”

Wabash will have its chances at titles this season. The Apaches’ score of 378 posted at the Huntington North Invitational would have placed them second at the Three Rivers Conference meet last fall with the only team above them being a Manchester side that lost four seniors to graduation.

Likewise, their opening score of 2019 would have been an improvement on last year’s sectional score, a tournament they placed fourth in with Manchester and Huntington North, another senior-laden squad, two of the teams finishing ahead of them.

Olson and his team is aware of the possibilities ahead of them this fall and are focused on making the most of them.

“Our expectations are to compete at a high level,” he said. “We finished fourth in the conference last year and fourth at sectionals. We want to improve on those performances, but golf is a unique game. All we can control is our play. We want to be better at the end of the season than we are today. In each of the last two seasons, we have made great improvements during the season, if we can do that, the results will take care of themselves.”