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Golfers take sixth in state; Bixby second overall

The West Fargo state golf team. Back row (from left): Katie Froemke, Ashley Bixby, Brittany Rheault, Kennedy Kraft. Front row: Sierra Peterson, Ashley Peterson. Submitted photo

The Packers’ girls golf season came to an end last Tuesday with a sixth-place finish in the North Dakota State Tournament and a two-day score of 732, just nine strokes away from first-place Bismarck Century.

After the first day of the tournament, the Packers were just seven strokes out of first, shooting a 358, their second best score of the season.

“The week before at Regionals, we did not play very well, but our day-one score was 31 strokes better than our regional score,” head coach Dan Wolf said. “It was very gratifying to see how hard the girls worked. The girls would say we could have played better, but I am very pleased overall.”

Highlighting the Packers was senior Ashley Bixby, who finished with a score of 157, one stroke shy of the individual state championship. She went into the final whole tied with Dickinson’s Rachel Jahner sank a long birdie putt to seal a victory.

“I’ve seen tournaments, both for boys and girls, come down to a choked putt, so it was nice to see a fantastic putt to win, “ Wolf said. “I know Ashley was disappointed, but she really has nothing to hang her head about.”

Eighth-grader Ashley Peterson finished 17th in the state with a two-day score of 184.

Looking back on the season as a whole, Wolf admits the team exceeded his expectations

“I hate to say they overachieved, because they have had the ability the whole time,” Wolf said. “It was just a matter of getting them to play the way they were capable, and they didn’t lose focus at the end.”

Wolf’s efforts were recognized as well, as he was named Co-EDC Coach of the Year.

“It’s really a direct reflection of what the team achieved,” Wolf said. “It’s great to be recognized, but when it is said and done, the players have to go out and perform. I would have given it up in a heartbeat to see us play on day two like we did on day one, or to see Ashley win.”