Cardinals both 2nd at sub-section
WORTHINGTON – Fairmont’s Emily Kim carded the fifth-best overall score in the Section 3AA, Southeast Sub-Section Meet on Wednesday at Prairie View Golf Links in Worthington.
Only New Ulm’s Kelton Schmitz, the boys’ first-place finisher who shot a 75, along with Fairmont’s Mitch Pfingsten and New Ulm teammates Tanner Zupfer and Ethan Kraus – who each shot rounds of 77 for second, third and fourth place, respectively – finished higher than the Cardinal junior girls golfer.
With Kim’s three-birdie round paced Fairmont’s runner-up team score of 395, while Jackson County Central advanced to the section meet with a winning score of 355.
New Ulm’s girls placed third with 413 points, and St. James was fourth with 446.
With Schmitz pacing the Eagles with his meet-low round of 75, New Ulm won the boys team title with a score of 311.
In addition to the JCC girls and New Ulm boys, the top five finishers not members of the winning teams advanced to the Section 3AA Meet at 9 a.m. next Thursday at Oakdale Golf Course in Buffalo Lake. Fairmont’s Kim and Pfingsten, along with Cassidy Krusemark, Joe Nordquist and Sam Havnen qualified for the sectional.
Pfingsten’s second-place mark and three-birdie round of 37-40-77 topped the Cardinals’ second-place team showing of 333.
The Huskies finished third with 341, while St. James was fourth with 395.
While Kim won the girls’ competition with a 4-over round of 39-40-79, Pfingsten had to win a playoff to earn the silver medal.
Kraus, Zupfer and Pfingsten all came into the clubhouse with rounds of 77, and the trio earned their medals via a playoff on Nos. 1 and 13.
Pfingsten drove the middle of the fairway on his opening tee shot in the playoff, while Kraus sent his into the water and Zupfer landed just shy of the No. 9 tee box.
Zupfer hit a rescue shot that landed him on the edge of the green, and after a chip and two-putt came away with a five.
Pfingsten sent his second shot to the front of the green, chipping from the fringe just short of the cup and two-putted for a five.
“For Mitch, he was hitting the ball well today, but his putting really let him down,” said Fairmont head coach John Korsmo. “He played well, and so did a lot of our players. It is really great to have five kids advancing to the section meet next week.”
Kraus also hit a solid rescue shot, but with the penalty stroke, was out of the running for second, settling for fourth.
On the second hole of the playoff, Pfingsten smacked his tee shot to the front left of the green and Zupfer followed with nearly the same shot.
Pfingsten chipped onto the green and sank the putt for a par, while Zupfer chipped onto the green but needed two putts to reach the hole and finished with a four on the hole for third.
Meanwhile, Kim started her successful round with a double bogey on the par-5 No. 10, before bouncing back with a par and a birdie on the next two holes.
With pars on Nos. 14 and 17, in addition to a birdie on the par-5 No. 15, Kim finished the back nine with a 4-over score of 40.
“Emily just played outstanding today, that was a great all-around round for her,” said Korsmo. “Her putting was absolutely out of this world. She one-putted three holes on the front nine and sank a 25-footer that was just great.”
As she started the front, Kim carded a bogey, but came right back with a par on No. 2. After another double bogey on No. 3, Kim came right back, sinking three straight pars.
On the par-4 No. 7 Kim scored her third red number (under par) and then on No. 8 again was able to score a par.
With a double bogey on No. 9, Kim finished her round with a 39-40-79.
Cassidy Krusemark scored a pair of pars in her first round under the century mark for the Cardinals, finishing with a 48-50-98.
Lexi Johnson had one par on the par-3 No. 5 to help her take a 53-55-108 round for the Cardinals, while Dayna Madsen completed the team score with her one-par round of 51-59-110.
Bailey Dulas had her personal-best round for Fairmont with a 57-64-121 and Alyssa Westcott fired a 64-67-131 to round out the Cardinals’ efforts.
On the boys’ side, in addition to Pfingsten’s playoff action, Joe Nordquist battled in a playoff against Jackson County Central’s Joe Brinkman for fifth place.
Nordquist hit his tee shot wide to the left, while Brinkman sent his right down the fairway on No. 1 during the playoff.
Nordquist then hit a short shot along the edge of the fairway to set up a stellar chip onto the green.
The Cardinal junior sank his 20-foot-putt for a birdie to keep up with Brinkman.
Brinkman sent his second shot onto the green from the fairway, but two-putted to birdie the hole.
On No. 13, Brinkman sent his tee shot well past the flag, while Nordquist landed just on the front fringe.
Nordquist chipped and two-putted for a four on the hole, while Brinkman sank a two-foot putt on his third shot for par to grab fifth place.
Nordquist finished the meet with a 36-44-80, including six pars and a birdie on the par-3, No. 9.
“I thought that both our players did a good job in the playoffs for their places,” said Korsmo. “They played well in their rounds, but it’s hard to come back and do it for a hole or two, but they finished well.”
Sam Havnen qualified for the section meet with his six-par round of 41-44-85, while Cole Huinker completed the team score with his three-par round of 43-48-91. Huinker also had a birdie in his round, carding a three on the par-4, No. 12.
Trason Arens and Derrick Hohensee rounded out the Cardinals’ efforts with rounds of 44-49-93 and 48-48-96, respectively.
Schmitz scored 14 pars in his winning round on the boys side, finishing with a 37-38-75 for New Ulm.
Section 3AA, Southeast
@ Prairie View Golf Course
Team Results (winner advances to Section 3AA Meet): 1. Jackson County Central 355, 2. Fairmont 395, 3. New Ulm 413, 4. St. James 446.
Meet Medalists (Top 5 non-members of the winning team advance to section): 1. Emily Kim (F) 39-40-79, 2. Abby Brinkman (JCC) 41-41-82, 3. Abby Benson (JCC) 39-49-88, 4. Emma Lilleberg (JCC) 47-45-92, 5. Corrine McKeeth (NU) 42-50-92, 6. Cassidy Krusemark 48-50-98, 7. Julia Schaefer (NU) 50-51-101, 8. Lyndsey Haler (SJ) 51-52-103.
Other Fairmont scores: Dayna Madsen 51-55-106, Lexi Johnson 53-55-108, Bailey Dulas 57-64-121, Alyssa Westcott 64-67-131.
Team Results (winner advances to Section 3AA Meet): 1. New Ulm 311, 2. Fairmont 333, 3. Jackson County Central 341, 4. St. James 395.
Meet Medalists (Top 5 non-members of the winning team advance to section): 1. Kelton Schmitz (NU) 37-38-75, 2. Mitch Pfingsten (F) 37-40-77, 3. Tanner Zupfer (NU) 37-40-77, 4. Ethan Kraus (NU) 37-40-77, 5. Joe Brinkman (JCC) 40-40-80, 6. Joe Nordquist (F) 36-44-80, 7. Sam Havnen (F) 41-44-85, 8. Austin Olson (JCC) 44-41-85.
Other Fairmont scores: Cole Huinker 43-48-91, Trason Arens 44-49-93, Derrick Hohensee 48-48-96.