Norwalk girls golf coach Chris Jackson has had years when he was glad the season was over. Not this year, however — even though it ended Wednesday at Sycamore Springs Golf Club in the Division I sectional tournament. His team finished seventh.
“My hope was that we could get right back to practicing tomorrow afternoon,” the 16-year coaching veteran said. “These girls have done so much over the year. They went 9-3 in the (SBC) Lake Division, showing perhaps the best win-loss record maybe in the history of girls golf at Norwalk.
“And, they capped off their regular season with an 183-190 victory over Bellevue, a team that is going to the state (in Division II),” he added.
Jackson said it has been rewarding watching his team make the strides it takes to go from just players to competitive players.
“I am going to lose three seniors who certainly were important to the team, Anna Little, our No. 1 player, our No. 5, Carmen Krichbaum — and our No. 6 when we play in tournaments, Emily Berry,” Jackson said. “That leaves three starters back, juniors Hannah Dumback, my No. 2, and Chloe Thomas, the No. 4, and sophomore Noelle Jackson, my No. 3.”
Jackson believes he has the replacements in sophomores in Whittley Castle, Lexey Bleile and Caitlin Harris that will allow him to quickly reload next fall.
“Those three have been part of the reserve group that has been getting their feet wet this fall,” Jackson said. “They gained experience that can only be gained by traveling with the varsity and becoming acquainted with the courses they will playing over the next two seasons.”
Little shot a 99 on Wednesday on sides of 45-54. Dumbeck’s card showed 49-64 numbers for a 113. Jackson continued to be rock solid in putting 51-57–108 numbers on the board. After that, it was Thomas in at 60-70–130 followed by Krichbaum at 61-58–119.
Powerful Ashland won the sectional by 44 strokes, topping runners-up Lexington, 323 to 367. The third team advancing was Lima Shawnee with a 392.
Following the team totals on down, it was Wapakoneta at 405, followed by Tiffin Columbian (410), Findlay (417), Norwalk (439), Celina (445), Fremont Ross (488) and Mansfield Senior (733).