Young Guns Driving HCS to New Heights
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Picture courtesy of Heritage Christian Girls Golf twitter account (@HCSgirlsgolf)
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The best-kept secret in the Circle City Conference this fall may be the Heritage Christian girls golf squad. Under first-year coach Brian Hicks, the Eagles have already set school records. They have their eyes set on setting another – a team regional appearance.
“HC girls have never advanced to regionals as a team,” said Hicks. “We have already set a 9-hole team record low this year and an 18-hole tournament record low. If the girls keep working hard, they have a chance to advance (out of sectionals).”
They are being led by a new face, freshman Yanah Rolston. She is an exceptional talent who already competes on the national level. She has been event medalist three times this season, including at last weekend’s Lapel Bulldog Classic.
“Yanah Rolston is an elite golfer with an excellent work ethic,” Hicks said. “When you watch her on the golf course, it is extremely hard to believe she is a freshman.”
While new to the team, she has quickly become a valued team member.
“Yanah has not only been accepted by her teammates; she has been embraced. She fits right in at HC,” said Hicks.
“I looked around at schools, and Heritage fit my needs,” Ralston said. ” I really like the close relationships among the team and my HC friends.”
It is not new for a fresh face to lead the Eagles. Last year, Hick’s daughter, current sophomore Morgan Hicks, lead the squad. The regional qualifier is looking to build on last year’s success.
She spent the summer revamping what she described as an “ugly swing.” While she claims she is still working out the bugs, her results over the summer suggest progress has been made.
“I played in 1 or 2 IJGA local events a week and placed in top 3 in most,” said Morgan. “I also played in a few larger state tournaments, and I made the cut each time.”
Seniors Lauren Chapman and Kendall Macri, along with junior Anna Molendorp, provide the leadership. Their improved and consistent play, coupled with the exploits of the aforementioned young guns, has resulted in two tournament wins already.
Beyond this, they have helped create a supportive and inclusive environment. This work began earlier in the summer.
“We have a very close team this year,” said Chapman. “That resulted from pre-season get-togethers – meals, events, and overnights after practice.”
The girls also point to this feeling of camaraderie as being a strength of their school.
“I love how everyone supports everyone else,” said Morgan Hicks. “I get texts from football players, boys golf team, HC graduates, etc. wishing us luck and congratulations.”
“I love the relationships that I have built from 1st through 12th grade,” echoed Macri. “I have great relationships with students, teachers, and coaches.”
As they settle into the middle of the season, their goals are clear.
“Our goals are for the team to advance to regionals and that we have at least one state finalist,” Coach Hicks reiterated.
It would not be surprising to see them accomplish even more than that.
Words of Thanks
Lauren Chapman – I would like to thank the entire team for making my senior year so enjoyable.
Anna Molendorp – The coaches that we’ve had have been supportive and encouraging. They not only help us to do our best on the course, but they also care about us as individuals, helping us to become better people.
Morgan Hicks – I would like to thank my dad for stepping up and taking over the coaching duties after Barry Gulley moved up to coaching college golf. The team has really bonded well this year.