By Michael Beaven
Beacon Journal sports writer
COLUMBUS: Temperatures in the 40s, strong gusts of wind and a steady rain were not about to slow down Jackson senior Cassie Pantelas on Saturday in the second and final round of the Division I state girls golf tournament.
Pantelas shot a 1-over-par 71 on the Ohio State University Golf Club Gray Course, and coupled with a 76 Friday, posted a two-day score of 147 to place second in a field of 72 female golfers. Columbus Bishop Watterson junior Erin Harper earned the medalist honor with a 145 and Dublin Jerome finished with 622 to win its third team title in a row.
“It was mental toughness out there,” Pantelas said. “That is really what got me through. I didn’t really see the cold as being a factor into how I was playing.”
Jackson shot 632 to place second out of 12 teams for the third time in four years. Rocky River Magnificat (640), Dublin Coffman (646), Mason (656) and Kent Roosevelt (665) placed third through sixth. Highland placed ninth at 689.
“Obviously, we would have liked to gotten the gold, but three second-place finishes is pretty outstanding for one school,” said Pantelas, a Seton Hall University recruit.
Jackson junior Landrie Grace shot a 75 Saturday to finish 10th with a score of 154.
“I didn’t play my best this weekend, but you are going to have those rounds,” Grace said. “My first round I played really bad and then my second round I got it back together.”
Senior Louisa Engelhardt (tied for 25th, 163), junior Gabby Minor (170) and freshman Hannah Lemons (173) also contributed to the Jackson team score.
“I am very proud of the girls and how they battled,” Jackson coach Teal Harvey said. “It was tough to get off to a bad start [Friday]. From the fourth hole on [Friday], we played really good golf, but we dug too deep of a hole. Jerome is good.”
The Nielsen sisters – junior twins Kasey and Kelly and freshman Kory – led Roosevelt.
“We ended up having the fourth-best team score today, which jumped us from eighth to sixth,” Roosevelt coach Bryan Harvey said. “In these conditions, they played exceptional today. That was our goal last night. When we left we were eighth and we talked about getting into the top six. The girls played hard.”
Kasey shot a 79 Saturday and a 77 Friday for 156, which was tied for 12th. Kelly was tied for 25th with 163 and Kory was tied for 29th with 164.
“We played OK,” Kasey said. “I know we can shoot better, based on what we shot at district, but our 4 and 5 players [sophomore Coreena Wise and freshman Chloe Wise] played well today. They stepped it up.”
Highland’s top golfer both days was junior Chloe McKinzie (tied for 32nd, 165). Wadsworth senior Alice Ho placed 17th with a 158.
Dublin Jerome won its third consecutive boys team title on the par-71 Scarlet Course and Dublin Coffman senior Nick Sparling earned his second medalist honor in a row by shooting 70-76—146 in a field of 72 male golfers. Walsh Jesuit senior Chase Johnson tied for seventh (78-80—158) and Stow senior Ian Holt tied for 10th (81-79—160).
“This weekend, my ball-striking was spot on, but my distance control was a little shaky,” said Johnson, the state runner-up in 2012. “I cherished this and I never stopped fighting. I kept trying to come back.”
Johnson and Holt are Kent State University recruits.
“I didn’t play that great today or this weekend,” said Holt, the co-medalist in 2011. “It just wasn’t my weekend, but I had to cherish this. This is the last one and I had a ton of people out here supporting me, with my friends and family.”
Dublin Jerome shot 641 to win, just ahead of Pickerington North (646), Cincinnati St. Xavier (647) and Toledo St. John’s Jesuit (648). Walsh Jesuit placed seventh at 670 and Twinsburg was 12th at 710. Twinsburg senior Matt McAdoo (164) and Walsh senior Luke Liberatore (165) finished inside the top 25.
Michael Beaven can be reached at 330-996-3829 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Read the high school blog at http://www.ohio.com/preps. Follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MBeavenABJ and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/sports.abj.