Corner Canyon girls golf still among state’s best
Jun 10, 2019 10:30AM
● By Catherine Garrett
The Corner Canyon High girls golf team finished second at the 5A state tournament at the Ridge May 7–8, led by senior Jamie Connell, who won medalist honors. (Photo courtesy Lexi Gagon)
By Catherine Garrett | [email protected]
The Corner Canyon High girls golf team have won the past three state championships and were the favorites to defend its 5A title again this season. The Region 7 champion squad finished 10 strokes back of region-rival Timpview — whom they had battled with closely all season — to place second at the 5A state tournament at the Ridge Golf Course in West Valley City May 7–8. Senior Jamie Connell won medalist honors after finishing the 36-hole tournament in a tie with West High’s Whitney Banz and going on to defeat her in an eight-hole playoff.
“I’m proud of my team for persevering and doing their best,” Connell said. “There were a few strokes that we gave away, but that’s golf and that just happens sometimes.”
“I am very proud of the girls,” first-year head coach Lexi Gagon said. “They showed up and gave it their all out there. Timpview’s girls played awesome, so huge congrats to them. It was cool to see such a young team win.”
Connell began Day 2 of the tournament four strokes back of Banz, but followed up her round of 77 the first day with a par-72 showing to draw even by the end of the scheduled 36 holes. Connell actually had a chance to win medalist honors outright on the 18th hole but just missed a three-foot putt for par. After fairly even play with Banz through seven holes, Connell sank an eight-foot putt for a birdie to finish her high school career on top.
“Jamie really showed grit and determination to pull out the win,” Gagon said. “We are very proud of her.”
Connell said she was disappointed in her play the first day of the tournament, but she came out on the course the second day with more “determination and motivation” to leave it all out there and overcame nerves to prevail in the playoff. “Honestly, when I walked to that first tee, I blocked everything out and I just played my game like I know how to. I essentially made myself think that I was just playing by myself,” she said. “This is all I wanted to do my entire high school career, so I’m really proud of myself for making it happen my senior year.”
Sophomore Savanah Romney also received All-State recognition with a fifth-place finish after rounds of 79s during the two-day tournament. Other scores for Corner Canyon were Suzie Taylor (84, 90), Anica Coesens (91, 91), Bella Boman (98, 97) and Ellie Whitehead (89, 94), who all finished among the top 30.
At the Region 7 tournament a week prior to state, Corner Canyon placed first as a team for the fourth consecutive year, this time with an 11-stroke victory over Timpview with Connell coming in second individually. Romney placed third and Taylor also finished in the top 10.
“The girls played well,” Gagon said. “Overall, I thought we had an amazing year. We went head-to-head with Timpview every single tournament.”
Also on the Chargers squad this year were Abbey Aamodt, Abby Brady, Emma Catmull, Olivia Didier, Emma Eckersley, Alexis Erickson, Brinley Horsley, Malin Jorgenson, Ambrey Judd, Megan Muir, Kiersten Smith and Afton Walker.
“The team has really come together this year,” Gagon said. “The girls have been out there supporting one another and really cheering each other on. It’s been a hard season due to weather, but we have been able to pull through and continue to work hard every day. The girls grew over the course of the season, as golfers and as human beings.”
Gagon said the program will miss Connell, who will play collegiate golf at Idaho State, and Taylor, who signed with Westmont College in California, along with Coesens, Catmull, Muir and Smith. “We will be sad to see them go, but we are very excited for the future of this golf team,” she said.