Dahmer to coach Jasper girls golf

Photo by Corey Stolzenbach/The Herald
Senior Elizabeth Ackerman is a top returner for Jasper girls golf. Ackerman shot 85 at the sectional last year for the second-lowest individual score overall.


JASPER — Josh Dahmer has switched positions with Jan Tellstrom this year.

Dahmer previously served as Tellstrom’s assistant when the latter was Jasper’s head girls golf coach. This year, Tellstrom has decided to stay on as an assistant while Dahmer has ascended to the head coaching spot.

For him, the transition from assistant to head coach has been pretty smooth.

“I think being around last year really helped a lot — me being able to help out and go to some of the matches and meet the girls and actually work with them a little bit kind of helped out greatly,” Dahmer said.

Dahmer is taking the reins of a Jasper program that experienced a lot of success in 2020, with the opportunity to do the same in 2021. The Wildcats won the team sectional championship last year, and not only that, they return Elizabeth Ackerman and Halle Knies for their senior years.

Ackerman shot an 85 for the second lowest individual sectional score, while Knies placed third overall with an individual score of 87.

Therefore, lofty goals might not seem so far fetched for the team this year.

“Qualifying at regionals and going to state would be awesome — probably not out of the question,” he said. “I think anything’s possible, especially if the girls continue to improve and work hard. And if they continue to work on their own individually, I think the sky’s the limit.”

Ackerman and Knies might be the most prolific of Jasper’s returners this year, but the Wildcats could field a senior-heavy lineup, at least in the beginning, in 2021. Dahmer praised Anna Schmitt and Avery Bartley for how hard they’ve been working, and Ainsley Pierce is also back for her senior year.

The Wildcats will also field some other players on their team, such as juniors Hillary Springer and Emma Ruxer, as well as sophomores Maddy Gaug and Molly Kissel.

Dahmer let it be known there will be decisions to make with the lineup.

“I don’t want to say that seniors automatically play or automatically that the lowest four always play because it’s not necessarily all about that,” Dahmer said. “It’s about the experience of girls playing golf and getting to compete in that sport and showing what they can do — and just trying to get everybody an opportunity to do that.”

The first-year head coach thinks his team can compete with the likes of Castle and Evansville Mater Dei and Evansville North in the Southern Indiana Athletic Conference. He thinks his players have an expectation of winning another sectional championship this year.

Yet, Dahmer let it be known that there’s a lot of golf to be played until then. The Wildcats are scheduled to open their season Monday at the Bloomington South Invite.

“You don’t have to go out there and birdie every hole,” he said. “Sometimes, you don’t even have to par the hole. If you had a couple bad shots or make a mistake or two, sometimes, it’s just good to go get your bogey and not try to do too much with what’s been given to you — and just take that for what it’s worth.”

More on DuboisCountyHerald.com