Strong girls golf teams in Empire

By MICHAEL COIT
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT

Led by a large contingent of returning standouts, Empire prep girls golf is strong at the midpoint of the season.

Competition is keen for both the North Bay League and Sonoma County League titles. Both leagues also feature a deep group of top players.

North Bay League

Cardinal Newman has the edge over Ukiah in the NBL with Maria Carrillo and Windsor also shooting well.

Analy's Madison Beckett tees off against Healdsburg at Santa Rosa Golf & Country Club, in Santa Rosa on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014.   (Christopher Chung / The Press Democrat)

Analy’s Madison Beckett tees off against Healdsburg at Santa Rosa Golf & Country Club, in Santa Rosa on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014. (Christopher Chung / The Press Democrat)

Back leading the Cardinals is Megan McConnell. Twice an All-Empire pick, the senior has qualified for the North Coast Section Tournament of Champions the past two seasons after scoring well at the NCS small school finals. McConnell also played in the small school championships as a freshman.

Ukiah returns two players — Cassidy Schutz and Grace Eversole — from last year’s squad that reached the TOC with a solid performance at the section qualifier.

Defending league champion Maria Carrillo, led by All-Empire selection Morgan Olhiser, has a young and deep team.
Windsor has All-Empire pick Ashley Llamas back along with Natalie Smith. The pair were on the Jaguars squad that qualified for the TOC two seasons back.

Santa Rosa has a team back in the league after not competing last season. Kara Curry, one of the area’s top prep players, paces the Panthers. The senior was an All-Empire selection as a freshman and sophomore.

Another player who will compete for the league’s top spot is Emma Dennett. The senior from Casa Grande was an All-Empire pick a year ago.

Montgomery’s top player Jaxen Brazell has put up some of the league’s low scores.

Sonoma County League

Analy looks capable of winning another SCL title after sharing the crown with Healdsburg last season.

All-Empire player Madison Beckett has stepped up her game as a junior to again lead Analy. Hailey Windsor and Katie Morita are shooting with the best, giving the Tigers a deep squad seeking a return to the TOC.

Back challenging for the league title is a veteran Healdsburg team. Four players return from last year’s squad that reached the section qualifier, led by All-Empire pick Amanda Pruitt and Hannah Mae Cronin.

Among the Empire’s best is Sarah Jane Catarozoli, from Petaluma. Just a sophomore, she qualified as an individual for last year’s TOC. Petaluma also returns two strong players in Izzy Southard and Tara Thomas.

Piner leads the best of the rest with several players sharing low-scoring honors for the Prospectors, led by Maddie Pitofsky.

Notable this SCL season is Elsie Allen fielding a team with Melissa Hernandez the team’s low scorer.

You can reach Staff Writer Michael Coit at 521-5470 or mike.coit@pressdemocrat.com.

  • Michael

    Umm last I checked Kara Curry is leading the league why isn’t she the first thing we see