Because of the inclement weather, the NIACC women’s golf team has played four competitive rounds of golf in the spring season.
The Lady Trojans played in the two-day Graceland University tournament in Maryville, Mo. on March 23-24, they played at the DMACC Invitational at the Otter Creek Golf Course on April 5 and played in a triangular at the Lake Panorama Golf Course on April 13.
Over the next two weekends, the NIACC women will play four rounds of golf at the NJCAA Region XI tournament at Otter Creek.
The first-ever, four-round women’s regional tournament starts at 11 a.m. on Friday. The tournament resumes at 10 a.m. on Saturday.
The second weekend of the tournament is set for April 27-28, also at Otter Creek.
“The goal for the first couple of rounds this weekend is to put us in great position to go the national tournament,” NIACC coach Chris Frenz said. “A lot can happen over a 72-hole tournament.
“So if they have one bad day, they can easily bounce back the other three days. They have to battle to stay in contention. In the end, our goal is to get the team to the national tournament, where I can guarantee there won’t be snow in Mesa, Ariz. in mid-May.”
The winning team and the next 10 individuals (not from the winning team) will represent the region at the NJCAA Division I national tournament at the Longbow Golf Course in Mesa, Ariz. May 14-17.
The snow that Frenz was referring to wreaked havoc with the NIACC women’s golf schedule this spring with several tournaments being canceled, including the Lady Trojans’ own NIACC Invitational.
“The spring has been brutal on everyone – the team, coach, athletic director and other teams,” Frenz said. “No one is getting much time in.”
“In saying that, we are fortunate to have a rec center that we can at least get in and work on our swings. Honestly, the team has handled all of this pretty well. We’re all frustrated, but they’ve had a good attitude.”
The NIACC women shot a low round of 376 at the DMACC Invitational at Otter Creek on April 5. Sophomore Courtney Tusler paced the Lady Trojans with a 90.
Also at the DMACC Invitational, other counting scores for the Lady Trojans were Brooke Maasch (94), Ashley Alert (95) and Morgan Luecht (97). Also for the Lady Trojans, Katelyn Loegering shot a 103 and Kelli Wilson carded a 109.
“Having been able to get on Otter Creek a couple of weeks ago helps a lot,” Frenz said. “That was actually our best scoring tournament so they should have a decent feel for the course.
“It was really good for the freshmen to play there. It’s a pretty straight forward course, but there are places you can’t afford to miss. So it’s good to know the nuances of the course.”
Maasch and Tusler will be looking for their second consecutive trip to the national tournament. Frenz will be looking to send at least one women’s golfer to the national tournament for the 12th straight season.
At last year’s regional tournament, which was shortened to one day due to poor weather conditions, Maasch tied for 10th with a 90 and Tusler tied for 12th with a 95.
Even with the shortened spring season, Frenz said the women’s team is entering the regional tournament in a positive frame of mind.
“They really worked hard,” he said. “They never gave up or complained even under difficult weather conditions.
“We know we’re a better scoring team that what we brought to the table during those tournaments. So that gives us confidence heading into the regional tournament.”