CHEYENNE, Wyo. — In its first of two ventures into the state of Wyoming, the Scottsbluff girls golf team is in good position to capture a third straight title at the Cheyenne Invitational at Airport Golf Club in Cheyenne, Wyo.
The Bearcats hold a five-stroke lead after Thursday’s first round of competition against many of the top squads in Wyoming. Using Wyoming’s three-player scoring system, Scottsbluff shot a tournament-leading 251. Casper Natrona is second with a 256 and Casper Kelly Walsh is third with a 260.
The final round of play will tee off today at 9 a.m.
“It’s a pretty good field,” Scottsbluff coach Mike Klein said of the tournament. “It was really nice for them to play with different girls. There’s nothing wrong with the girls that they play with around here, but they see each other so much during the season. It’s nice to get away and go play where they don’t know anybody. They get a chance to meet new kids and just go play golf somewhere where they don’t play a whole lot.”
Under the Nebraska four-player scoring system, Scottsbluff totaled a season-best 338. That’s 12 shots lower than the Bearcats’ previous best, which was recorded at the season-opening Sidney Invite.
“They played better. I was pleased,” Klein said. “It’s still not what they can do or what they want to do, but it’s better.”
Four Bearcats enter today’s play in medalist contention. Jordan York led Scottsbluff on Thursday with a season-low round of 83. She’s in a four-way tie for third just three strokes behind leader Eryn Ellis of Casper Natrona, who opened with an 80. Casper Kelly Walsh’s Amanda Hinchey is second with an 81.
Megan and JaLee Pilkington both fired season-low scores of 84 and are tied for seventh.
Kim Moore carded a round of 87 and is tied for 10th, while Hannah Holloway opened with her season-best score of 94.
“Right now nobody’s really pulled away from anyone else with a really low score. They’re all just hitting enough good shots to keep it respectable,” Klein said. “JaLee had a really nice round. She had a couple bad holes and still held it together. That was the first time she’s played that course. All of the other girls played it last year.”
The tournament course is the same one that annually hosts the Wyoming Open. Klein said it’s a tough course, but a fair one.
“It’s tight. You have to hit it straight,” he said. “If you hit it just a little off line, you’re probably in more trouble than if you hit it a lot off line. The greens are good. They’re kind of fast, but they hold shots.”
Team Scoring: 1, Scottsbluff, 251. 2, Casper Natrona, 256. 3, Casper Kelly Walsh, 260. 4, Gillette, 289. 5, Laramie, 297. 6, Cheyenne East, 300. 7, Cheyenne Central, 302. 8, Cheyenne South, 313.
Individual Top 10: 1, Eryn Ellis, Natrona, 80. 2, Amanda Hinchey, Kelly Walsh, 81. 3, Jordan York, Scottsbluff, 83. 3, Bailee Watt, Kelly Walsh, 83. 3, Jandey Shackelford, Gillette, 83. 3, Kristen Day, Cheyenne South, 83. 7, JaLee Pilkington, Scottsbluff, 84. 7, Megan Pilkington, Scottsbluff, 84. 9, Caitlyn Skavdahl, Natrona, 86. 10, Kim Moore, Scottsbluff, 87. 10, Mariah Farden, Cheyenne East, 87.