Leafs have super eight

Chris Steele
The Lady Leafs are Northern Illinois Big 12 champions for the eighth year in a row. Pictured are, first row, from left: Paige Laingen, Eleni Andrios, Eryn Murray, Miranda Bolte, Lauren Murray and Elizabeth Roodhouse. 
Second row, from left: Heather Dietrich, Emma Snell, Jenna Cheek, Carson Dodge and Andie Welch.

The Lady Leafs’ golf team finished second at the Galesburg Invite and earned the Northern Illinois Big 12 Invite crown for the eighth-consecutive season.

Galesburg Invite

Geneseo finished runner-up in the team competition, and Jenna Cheek finished second on a card back tiebreaker, on Sept. 23.

Geneseo finished with a dazzling team score of 344 just 16 strokes back of champion Quincy in the 10-team field.

The Leafs’ Cheek finished with a 5-over score of 78 and a second place finish at Bunker Links, in Galesburg.

Lauren Murray tied for ninth carding an 85, and Elizabeth Roodhouse finished tied for 12th with an 89.

Geneseo’s Eryn Murray nabbed a share of a tie for 18th place with a 92, and Emma Snell tied for 26th with a 96.

The Leafs’ Carson Dodge landed in 32nd place with a 104.

NIB 12 Conference Invite

Geneseo earned the eighth-consecutive NIB 12 Invite title at Fairways Golf Course, on Sept. 26.

A junior, the Lady Leafs’ Cheek was runner-up with a new personal best 77, and Yorkville’s Kait Natividad shot a blistering 69 to win the individual title.

“It was awesome to see her get two games in a row in the 70s to show that consistency with her scores,” Geneseo Coach Jon Murray said. “I’m very confident with her going through the (championship season) and into next year.”

Geneseo won the team title with a 344 team score over runner-up Yorkville (355) in the five-team field (one team short of being recognized as an official conference championship).

With the Lady Leafs seem to be peaking at the right time, Geneseo has posted back-to-back team scores of 344 the kind of consistency a team needs for a championship season run.

“They should be confident heading into the state series with that,” Murray said. “They will have to be able to repeat that to keep moving all the way to the state level. It should definitely add to their confidence.”

Last season, Geneseo finished second at Class 1A Pontiac Regional with a 383 team score, and the Leafs finished with 389 at the Rock Falls Sectional.

While the pressure and difficulty ramps up with the postseason, a 344 team score would have been enough to win both the regional and sectional tournaments, last season.

At the NIB 12 Invite, Geneseo had five players earn medals for finishing in the top 15 individually.

Murray carded an 85 to finish in fifth place, and Snell finished a stroke back in sixth place with an 87.

Geneseo’s Roodhouse fired a 95 to finish in 10th place, and Dodge finished 11th with a 97.

The Leafs’ Heather Dietrich shot a 101, and Paige Laingen finished with a 105.

A freshman, Eleni Andrios carded a 112 for Geneseo.

The Leafs’ Andi Welch and Miranda Bolte each finished with a 113, and Rachel Vondra shot a 118.

The Lady Leafs’ next competition will be at the IHSA Class 1A Putnam County Regional at Edgewood Park Golf Club, in McNabb, on Wednesday, Oct. 4, at 9 a.m.