Talking with the members of the Princeton varsity golf program throughout the season, the attention was always focused on the Section 7AAA Tournament at Grand National Golf Club in Hinckley.
With the that much time being devoted to the postseason meet, the Tigers were able to come through with a great performance, placing the team second in the highly competitive meet while also sending a pair of golfers to the Class AAA State meet.
Shooting a 314 for their day one score on June 3, followed by an even better 311 on June 5, the Tigers were able to secure a second place finish in the meet, falling just eight strokes behind Duluth East for the Section 7AAA Title and what would have been the group’s first ever berth to state as a team.
Lucas Ostlund and Noah Temp were the hot shooters for Princeton as they finished fifth and seventh respectively earning trips for the juniors to the Class AAA State Meet.
First round at Grand National
Entering into the first day of the section tournament, the Tigers found themselves in tight spot, as they aimed to advance to the second day of the tournament said Head Coach Derek Hasselberg. “Typically, the top three teams make the cut along with any team within 10 strokes. Because of the scoring, we had seven teams that made that first day cut, which is pretty unheard of,” he said.
Thanks to Section 7AAA allowing any team within 10 strokes of the lead, the fifth place Princeton team was able to advance as they trailed the first place Duluth East by six strokes.
Temp had the low round for the Tigers with his round of 75 strokes leading the way for Princeton while Ostlund and Michael Angstman had scores of 77 and 79, respectfully.
Second round at Grand National
Having seven teams advancing to the second day, the rounds had the teams placed in seventh, six, fifth and fourth play a round before the top three teams went.
Taking advantage of the rule that allowed the Tigers to keep competing, Princeton was able to blaze out to a 311 for their round, placing them in first place in the clubhouse by the time their group of teams finished.
Ostlund was able to find another gear in his second round at Grand National, with the junior shooting a 73 while Temp and Luke Dufner both had 77 strokes for their rounds.
With their strong round, Princeton knew it would come down to how the Greyhounds shot for their round. “It was going to come down to Duluth East and us,” said Hasselberg.
The Greyhounds were able to match their first round performance of 308 with a 309, holding on to take the section title and advance to the State meet, keeping Princeton in second place.
Though coming in second place, Hasselberg and the Tigers were happy with the way the season ended for the team. “It was close but it was a great accomplishment for us. We went out there and the kids felt pretty good about how they played. Duluth East, credit to them, they shot some really good scores,” he said.
Temp and Ostlund head to State
Both Temp and Ostlund will now prepare for the Class AAA State Meet, which will be held at Bunker Hills Golf Club in Coon Rapids.
Heading down to the course in Coon Rapids, Hasselberg looks for the duo to use the lack of expectations to their strength. “The thing for them is that there is no pressure on them because they will be relatively unknown compared to some of the bigger names down at the state tournament,” he said.
As for what Hasselberg expects for the pair at the state meet, he doesn’t think the stage will be too big for either of the golfers. “I expect them to do very well, I expect them to perform like they have all season,” he said.
The pair traveled down to Bunker Hills on June 15 to start the two day tournament.
Princeton girls finish strong
In a season that was full of growth for the Princeton girls golfers, the squad was able to go out on a high note, finishing their season with their best round of the year at the Section 7AAA meet at Grand National Golf Club in Hinckley on June 3.
The Tigers were able to shoot a season low with 381 strokes, placing the team seventh in the section meet, though it was not enough to advance the girls to the second day of the tournament.
“Our girls had their best round of the year, with some of the girls shooting their best scores,” said Head Coach Derek Hasselberg on the performance the girls ended the year with.
Princeton’s top golfer on the day was Avery Romann, who shot a 90 for her round, just missing the cut to advance to the second day of sections. Finishing four strokes behind Romann, was fellow junior Madeline Whitcomb.
With the season now over for the Tigers, the preparation for next year will now begin.
If Princeton, who will return every girl from their varsity lineup, hopes to make a jump in the standings, it will rely on how the girls spend their offseason according to Hasselberg. “If these kids can keep playing through the summer they will gain that much more experience and ability that going into next season, they will be starting off at a much better point,” he said.