Against a stout field, the Carrollton High School girls' golf team finished 11th in its own Lady Trojan Invitational at the Sunset Hills Country Club on Monday afternoon.
With a total of 13 teams, some of them the top in their respective classifications and most headed for either state or sectionals, it was more about the Lady Trojans themselves than where they finished in the standings.
"That would have qualified us for state, that would have done it," Carrollton head coach Kurt Hitzeman said. "Many of the coaches here commented this is the strongest tournament they've been to all year. If you look at the scores that bares out. We've got a [Darlington] JV player shooting 72. A lot of quality golf from the young ladies. Obviously, the course held up great. Sunset Hills is a great venue for this tournament. Everybody compliments the course and the staff did a great job setting everything up and feeding the girls and everything after. It was a great day."
Calhoun took the team title with a 237, six strokes better than runner-up Woodward Academy with a 243. From there, it was close as Blessed Trinity and Columbus tied for third with matching 247 scores and Cambridge and Northgate tied for fifth at 258. Marist (261) took seventh, while Bremen and Harrison tied for eighth at 266. Darlington (289) was 10th ahead of Carrollton with Newnan (312) and St. Pius (336) rounding out the field.
Individually, Calhoun's Kate Mashburn earned Low Medalist honors with an even par 71, while Cambridge's Heather Kipniss (73) was the runner-up.
The tournament came after the Lady Trojans found out they would not be headed to the postseason. With a score expected to get them into the Class AAAA Sectional, it was announced there would not be a sectional in Class AAAA and teams with qualifying state scores would go straight to state.
"We're disappointed. We found out [Monday] that sectionals has been by-passed this year for quad-A. The teams that qualified by score are going directly to state, so that knocked us out. We found that out earlier [Monday]," Hitzeman said. "Obviously, with the score we shot [Monday], that would qualify us and I think we are a state-caliber team. Everything needs to fall in place at the right time sometimes. What our girls can take from this is that we have made improvements, we're finishing on a high note, whether that be in the state GHSA postseason or in our tournament."
Leading the way for Bremen was Averi Schrews with a 79, then Anna Schrews (85), Taylor Walker (102) and Bethany Chapman (116). The Lady Blue Devils already qualified for the Class AA state tournament by winning the Region 5-AA championship.
Even though the Lady Trojans will not be continuing in GHSA play, they do still have a season to finish up. Next it is the Two-Day Ladies Invite at the Summergrove Golf Club on April 29-30.
"We still have a lot to play for. We still have another two-day tournament coming up. These events are as high-caliber as they come in the state of Georgia. Proud of our girls," Hitzeman said. "I'm proud of their improvement and their general attitude throughout the year. My girls are great hosts, great hosts to the rest of the girls that were out here. We get a lot of compliments on our kids."