Rangers set to field team this year

Photo by Corey Stolzenbach/The Herald
Forest Park junior Grace Haas gets some work in Monday morning at Christmas Lake Golf Club. The Rangers girls golf season is set to open Aug. 3 at home against Springs Valley.

By COREY STOLZENBACH
sports@dcherald.com

SANTA CLAUS — The 2020 Forest Park girls golf squad fielded merely three golfers, but this year looks to be different because the Rangers will have at least four golfers, and could have as many as six.

The Rangers are returning senior Grace Wendholt and juniors Grace Haas and Kaitlyn Seffernick from last year, but sophomore Brooke Rasche, who played volleyball last year, is set to try and help the golf squad this year.

“She’s a great athlete — so she should be pretty easy to kind of teach the little things to as the season progresses,” Rangers coach Nick Grothouse said of Rasche.

Haas spoke to The Herald on Monday, and is excited about the prospects of competing as a team this season.

“Having another person is just great because we can actually compete and place at sectionals and invitationals and things instead of just playing like we would for practice,” Haas said.

Grothouse noted that Rasche is a quick learner, but because she is new, he’ll likely start her off as the team’s No. 4 golfer. He said in an update on Monday that Haas was likely to be the team’s No. 2 golfer. Wendholt would be the team’s No. 1, and Seffernick is a likely candidate for No. 3 at this point.

He told The Herald that Seffernick said her drive has been straight compared to last year. Grothouse noted Haas had trouble with the irons, so they’re working on where she comes in contact with the ball — more on the downswing than upswing.

“If we can get her irons figured out, and get Kaitlyn’s drive straight, that can change their scores dramatically,” he said.

The second-year Rangers coach is very confident that his senior can get to regionals in 2021. He pointed out that Wendholt has been working a lot — such as with a similar over the winter or going to the range more often.

“She hasn’t really quit the game since last year,” Grothouse said.

Grothouse himself has shown growth and improvement compared to his first year that he coached the Rangers. Each practice this year is focused on a specific skill in addition to the conditioning — which is important if the team is competing in an 18-hole tournament.

Forest Park might be fielding a full team this year, but the Rangers might not have the numbers like other teams in the Pocket Athletic Conference and/or in their sectional do. Grothouse sees big improvements for the team this year, but declined to make predictions on how far they’ll go since he didn’t know the competition.

“Since they’ve been playing summer league, they kind of have an idea of where their scores are falling,” he said. “My goal is for them in our first team-based competition for their score to match what they’ve been doing all summer. If it’s better, that’s great. But I want to at least be even with what they’ve been doing.”

The season is set to open Aug. 3 against Springs Valley at Christmas Lake Golf Club.




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