ZANESVILLE — The Miami Trace Lady Panthers golf team placed sixth at the Division I District tournament in 2018.
Miami Trace played their way back to the District tournament this year and competed in the District meet at Eaglesticks in Zanesville Monday, Oct. 7.
After shooting a team score of 449 last season, on Monday the team placed third with a 383.
Only one team and one individual not on that team qualify to the State tournament.
New Philadelphia won the District title with a 335, including a score of 80 by sophomore Sydney Devore.
Miami Trace sophomore Alyssa Butler shot a team low score of 82. Two other players also had scores of 82. One of them, senior Allie Jurkovic of New Philadelphia, did not have to take part in the playoff because her team won the tournament.
That left Butler and senior Hannah Jankauskas of second place Warren to compete in a sudden death playoff.
On the first hole of the playoff, Jankauskas had a four and Butler scored a five.
Also for Miami Trace, sophomore Libby Aleshire shot an 88; senior Regan Hagler had a 106; sophomore Makayla Barnes shot a 107 and junior Destinee Butcher had a score of 120.
Logan was fourth with a 406 and John Glenn was fifth with a 412.
Four other schools, Tri-Valley, Dover, Marietta and Chillicothe, were represented, but did not have enough golfers for a team score.
Chillicothe’s Isabella Fischer tied for 15th out of 30 competitors with a 97.
“I’m really proud of the girls,” Miami Trace head coach Todd Wallace said. “They set the goal of returning to Districts and having an undefeated season in the FAC (Frontier Athletic Conference). That’s something that my girls had never done.” Miami Trace indeed won the FAC, going 24-0.
“That fourth and fifth position had to really step up and help us with our scoring,” Wallace said. “From last year’s District competition to this year’s District, Libby and Alyssa both cut 20 strokes-plus off their 18-hole round at Districts to get down into the 80’s. All of our kids cut at least 10 strokes off their scores from last year at Districts.
“We had one girl that replaced a senior last year, Destinee Butcher, she’s a junior. She came out and filled in that fourth spot,” Wallace said. “She cut quite a few strokes off during the year.
“We knew we probably couldn’t win the District, but we were shooting for runner-up,” Wallace said. “Warren is a strong team (with three seniors) and New Philadelphia had three seniors on their team.”
The two-person playoff began (and ended) on the No. 1 hole.
“They played their 18-hole round,” Wallace said. “They determined what their scores were and checked everything. There was a coin toss and they started on hole one. Hannah scored a four and Alyssa scored a five and the rest is history.”
Miami Trace returns all but two golfers (Regan Hagler and Haley Davis) next season.
“Now we look forward to next season,” Wallace said. “Next year, our goal is to be District champs and go to State and give it a shot. The year after that, to go to State and be State champions as a team.
“We wouldn’t have shot so low if it hadn’t been for senior Regan Hagler,” Wallace said. “She came in and worked really hard this year. She’s only played golf for two years. She became a really good golfer and we’re going to miss her next year. That’s going to be a really hard spot to fill.
“Senior Hayley Davis came in and played our sixth spot during league,” Wallace said. “I wish she would have started a year or two sooner. I think she picked up the skills to play golf the rest of her life and that’s what matters to me.”