One subpar round shouldn't define stellar season

TRAVIS DAVID

Sports editor

As a former grappler, I always thought wrestling was the most arduous sport.

I am still a little bias to the oldest and greatest sport, it’s definitely not for the weak.

But it’s not the most humbling.

That belongs to the game of golf.

The Gibson Southern girls golf team can attest to that.

Heading into Friday’s first round of the IHSAA State Championships at Prairie View Golf Club, the Lady Titans were riding the high of the most successful season in school history.

None of the six varsity golfers, nor coach Cliff Irvin expected to compete for a state final this weekend.

But none of them expected what unravelled Friday.

Same goes for this reporter.

I have followed this team for most of the season and could tell you most of their tendencies.

I don’t have to follow Allie Sensmeier for the entire hole to know how she played...all I have to do is watch the way she walks off the green.

If Claire Jones is tugging on her visor you know things are not going well.

Hillary Humbaugh is the exception. That girl could hit a hole-in-one and she would have the same stoic reaction as if she took a double par on a hole.

But that is what makes her such a great player.

And she is only beginning to touch the surface.

With Jones, Sensmeier and Liz Angermeier all graduating after this year, Humbaugh is going to be the leader next year — as a junior.

Anyway...back to my point, I never would have expected the lowest score turned in for the Lady Titans on Friday to be a 94.

But it happens.

In this sport, a lot.

But the good thing about the state finals is there will be a tomorrow.

The state tournament is a two-day affair.

And I would be highly surprised if a team score close to 400 happens on Saturday.

This team is simply too good.

And they are smart.

Mistakes made on Friday will turn into lessons learned and corrections will be made on Saturday.

And this group hates to lose.

They all may be soft spoken, but make no mistake Friday’s score will be a motivation for an even stronger finish for their final 18 holes of the season and for the three seniors, maybe of their careers.

Maybe I am wrong. I was wrong about Friday.

But if that happens, it should not and will not tarnish the type of season they have displayed.

Sans the season-opening tournament in Bloomington, the only time Gibson Southern has came up short this season came in matches which Evansville North played in.

Speaking of North, the defending state champions struggled a bit on Friday.

Well, let me rephrase that.

The Huskies struggled by their own lofty standards.

They ended up with a 311 after setting state scoring records in the sectional and regional.

The 311 is 14 strokes higher than their state record score of 297 in the final round last season.

So maybe we can just chalk up Friday’s high score by the Lady Titans to the course and the windy conditions.

Either way, whether they fall to 15th in the team standings on Saturday or make a move up the leaderboard, the 2019 Gibson Southern girls golf team has had a season to be proud of and one they will all be sure to remember for years and years to come.

Thanks for the ride, ladies.

And also a big thanks to the parents for all the kind words over the course of the season!

Here’s to Saturday…

Travis David is the sports editor of the Daily Clarion. He can be reached at 812-220-4843 or sports@pdclarion.com. Follow him on Twitter @Tdavid_21.

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