Reigning Champs Retain Titles in D4

October 17, 2015

By Mark Meyer
Special for Second Half

EAST LANSING – A pair of twos were wild Saturday afternoon at Forest Akers East golf course.

Twos as in two straight Lower Peninsula Division 4 girls golf titles for Kalamazoo Hackett and two straight individual medalist honors for Maple City Glen Lake junior Nichole Cox. 

Hackett held off Macomb Lutheran North to win the team title by nine strokes (684-693) while Cox carded a 74 to go with her 76 on Friday for a two-day total of 150, six strokes better than Frankenmuth runner-up Meg Watkins.

Hackett coach Alan Radomsky stood off to the side of the scoreboard as the team totals were being tabulated. He was comfortable in knowing that his team was prepared to play its best golf, despite the blustery, 45-degree weather. 

“I don’t do a lot of coaching when the girls are on the course,” said Radomsky, whose team led by three strokes after Friday’s opening round. “I was confident in knowing that they were prepared to make the shots that would keep us in contention.

“Even though we won by a lot last year (33 strokes), I felt just as good going into the final round this year because I knew the girls would bring their best. That’s the kind of team they are.” 

Junior Naomi Keyte led Hackett with a 76, and finished third overall at 158. Teammates Lizzie Stull (78-90) and Becca Radomsky (88-80) tied for sixth overall at 168.

“Lizzie didn’t quite have the round she was hoping for but Naomi and Becca were there to back her up,” Radomsky said, “and that’s pretty much how it’s been throughout the season. They pick each other up, support one another and refuse to let anything get them down.

“This team, more than any other I’ve coached (at Hackett) has truly exemplified what it means to be a team.” 

Molly Clark (102-94) and Savannah Madden (96-105) completed the scoring for Hackett, which held a 344-347 lead over Lutheran North after 18 holes.

Lutheran North placed three individuals in the top 10. Sophomore Serena Nguyen shot 82-80 to finish fourth at 162 while teammates Sydney Martens (85-85) and Kaity Rittner (85-86) finished ninth and 10th, respectively. 

Watkins’ 75 on Saturday helped Frankenmuth secure third place at 722 while Livonia Ladywood (725) and Lansing Catholic (761) finished fourth and fifth, respectively.

Meanwhile, Cox – who traveled nearly 200 miles from her home in Leelanau County’s Kasson Township (population of approximately 1,500) – felt right at home amid the stiff wind and cold temperature. 

“I’m used to it, almost to the point where I look forward to it,” Cox said. “I think I do have an advantage in that the cooler temperatures really don’t bother me.”

Cox said she had a feeling it might be a good day after draining a long birdie putt on the opening hole. 

“It started poorly (on hole No. 5) because I pulled my drive under a tree and then had to punch out,” Cox said. “I end up on the back side of the green, a long ways away. Then somehow I manage to sink this impossible, twisty-turning putt for a birdie. I had a feeling some more good things were going to happen.”

Click for full results.

PHOTOS: (Top) Kalamazoo Hackett repeated as LP Division 4 champion, this time winning at Forest Akers East. (Middle) Maple City Glen Lake's Nichole Cox, left, and Frankenmuth's Meg Watkins claimed the top two spots in the individual standings. (Click for more from

Potent Pair Lead Cedarville/DeTour Girls to Repeat; Ontonagon Ace Paces Field

By Jason Juno
Special for

June 1, 2023

HYDE – Cedarville and DeTour have been golfing together for just two years as a co-op – and they already have two Upper Peninsula Girls Golf Finals titles.

The Islanders repeated in Division 3 with a score of 420 on Thursday at Highland Golf Club near Escanaba. That was eight strokes better than runner-up Big Bay de Noc and 16 fewer than third-place Ontonagon.

“It’s nice,” Islanders coach Jeff Autore said. “These girls worked hard. They knew they had a chance to be defending champions. We knew we had a pretty good chance coming in. This was our goal. The girls knew it, they were determined. This is why we practice in the rain and in the snow and in the cold.

Ontonagon’s Emmy Bobula tees off during her championship round.“We expected this and we worked hard for this, and they deserve it.”

For Hayley Kohlmann, who shot a 94, and Taylor Williams, who carded a 107, it was their third-straight team title. Cedarville also won as a standalone team in 2021. 

“They’ve had a pretty good run,” Autore said. “And then we co-opped with DeTour, and Lily Plowman has been our best player all year long. She finished in the top five last year.”

Plowman also shot a 94 on Thursday. She and Kohlmann were two of just three golfers in the field to shoot under 100.

The other was medalist Emmy Bobula of Ontonagon; she shot a 90. All three were over 100 at last year’s Final, held at the same course.

Bobula shot a 113 last year.

“So I really improved this season a lot,” she said. “It was crazy, that was my PR (personal record), so yeah, pretty bonkers.”

It was definitely a good time for such a good performance. She likes playing in tournaments and doesn’t get nervous for them. There’s no bigger tournament than this one for U.P. high school golfers.

Mackinac Island’s Isabella Nitzschke hits out of a tough spot beside a tree. “It’s crazy, it’s kind of surreal,” Bobula said. “I shed a few tears because it’s my senior season. It feels pretty good.”

Her coach Jim Jessup said Bobula wanted to have a big year – and she did.

“She’s a senior, she had drive, she wanted to do things this year and she did them,” Jessup said.

It all started for her Thursday off the tee.

“Probably my drives really saved me,” she said. “I had good drives today, which is probably the best thing and chipping, I did pretty well in chipping today actually.”

Ontonagon’s Madyson Pantti shot a 102 and Camryn Pederson of Big Bay de Noc a 105.

Click for full results.

PHOTOS (Top) Cedarville/DeTour’s Lily Plowman hits out of the sand during Thursday’s UPD3 Final. (Middle) Ontonagon’s Emmy Bobula tees off during her championship round. (Below) Mackinac Island’s Isabella Nitzschke hits out of a tough spot beside a tree. (Photos by Jason Juno.)