May 9, 2013 | Vol. 117 -- No. 3

Medical Lake girls' golf end up tops in NEA

The Medical Lake girls’ golf team is in a place they have not been before, or at least for some time. The Cardinals sit on top of the Northeast A League standings as regular season champions at a perfect 5-0 with four golfers in the league’s top-10 scorers.

Now the Cardinals get to test themselves again with the district tournament that took place this past Wednesday at Sundance Golf Club.

The last competition came at the Fairways, April 24, where Medical Lake scored a victory over Chewelah and Newport with a score of 542, albeit again as the visitors brought incomplete teams. Newport did bring the match’s medalist in Courtney Wiese who shot an 87.

Medical Lake sophomore Hannah Hartman shot a 102 for second place and the Cards senior, Hannah Veltri a 104. “That’s a 105 average, it’s the best score I’ve had in many of my years,” head coach Ivan Gustafson said. “It’s pretty exciting what they’ve done so far.”

Veltri is second in the most recent NEA standings in statistics provided April 29.

“Hannah, she’s playing her best golf,” Gustafson said. “She’s playing good golf, she’s shooting hard and straight; she stays out of trouble by not going out of bounds.”

Breaking 100 is a goal Veltri’s been shooting for all season. “She’s been so close so many times breaking 100, but day in, day out she always shoots the same,” Gustafson said. “I think she shot a 102 and 100.”

“If she shoots 100 through league and regionals she’s going to state,” Gustafson said. “I think if all of my girls progress they usually come down a stroke or two (by postseason).”

All six of his top golfers are in the same AP class. “That should tell you right there that I have six girls that are just committed to school, taking tough classes,” Gustafson said. “That makes them good on the golf course too.”

Gustafson also pointed to Hartman who shot a 100 at the Fairways. “I expect her to be in that mix as well for scoring in our regional,” and hopefully on to state.

Teresa Jensen is another top-5 golfer in the NEA. “She shot a 111 at Lakeside (Sundance), but then she shot a 104, 105 at the Fairways,” taking fourth place, Gustafson said.

When the Cardinals played Newport and Chewelah, the top golfer from Newport took first place, but Medical Lake nailed down second through fifth. “So we had four out of the top five and that’s better than we’ve ever done,” Gustafson said.

Another barometer Gustafson used to measure his team’s success was comparing Medical Lake scores at the Fairways to those of a recent Great Northern League match. “Our team score would have taken third place.”

Paul Delaney can be reached at pdelaney@cheneyfreepress.com.

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