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Jays win first ever meet, Bennion takes medalist

The Jamestown High School girls golf team won the first meet in program history on Tuesday at the Minot Invite. Team members are, front row, from left, Savannah Kramlich, Kaitlin Mullowney, Mara LeFevre. Back row, from left, coach Dean Kraft, Emily Reiten, Sierra Bennion, Sarah Azure. Submitted photo

Sierra Bennion’s nerves aren’t like they use to be.

As an eighth-grader, the Jamestown standout golfer remembers participating in a tournament playoff and completely falling apart.

“It was a mess,” she recalled.

Bennion had nerves of steel on Tuesday, sinking a 20-foot putt from the fringe to birdie the playoff hole and win her third varsity tournament at Minot’s Souris Valley Golf Course.

Bismarck’s Katie Kasper was on the green in two shots, but Bennion’s second shot didn’t quite get there. Still, she took out her putter.

“I was thinking, ‘I’m gonna make this putt and I’m gonna force her to make hers,’” Bennion said. “It was a beautiful putt for birdie. It was awesome.”

Before Bennion even started the playoff hole, Jamestown had already put the finishing touches on its first-ever tournament victory. The Blue Jays finished with a 351, beating runner-up Century by five strokes.

For coach Dean Kraft, it’s 27 years in the making.

“As I told the girls, this feels really good, but you don’t want this to be the only good feeling this year,” Kraft said.

Kraft said Bennion played steady golf, an assessment the varsity veteran agreed with.

“I wasn’t in any trouble or didn’t have any doubles,” Bennion said. “I guess you could call it boring golf.”

Sarah Azure finished second on the team, recording a 90 for ninth place. She had previously dropped 10 strokes from her game with an 81 at the East-West.

However, the big drop this time around came from Kaitlin Mullowney, who fired a career-best 93 after shooting a 103 at the East-West.

“She had a great attitude,” Kraft said. “I think she really had a great time out there.”

Mara LeFevre also went lower than usual, finishing with a 98. Emily Reiten (107) and Savannah Kramlich (118) played, but didn’t have their scores used.

The Blue Jays don’t have another meet until Aug. 28, when they travel to Dunseith for the Turtle Mountain Invite. Bennion said getting that first team win was significant.

“I feel like now we’ve got a taste for it,” Bennion said. “We’re hungry for more.”

Girls golf

Class A

Minot Invite

at Souris Valley Golf Course

Par 72

Team results: 1. Jamestown 351; 2. Century 356; 3. Bismarck 360; 4. Minot 365; 5. Mandan 382; 6. Dickinson 386; 7. Williston 402; 8. Turtle Mountain 506.

Top 10

1. Sierra Bennion, J, 70 (won on first playoff hole); 2. Katie Kasper, B, 70; 3. Paige Argent, Min, 82; 4. Kayla Smith, C, 83; 5. Kaycee Schulz 84; T6. McKinley Bender, Min, 88; T6. Jami Wells, W, 88; T6. Sydney Charchenko, 88; T9. Sarah Azure, J, 90; T9. Sydney Smith, C, 90.

Results by team

Jamestown (351): Sierra Bennion 70, Sarah Azure 90, Kaitlin Mullowney 93, Mara LeFevre 98, Emily Reiten 107, Savannah Kramlich 118.

Century (356): Kayla Smith 83, Sydney Smith 90, Lauren Fleming 91, Lauren Bischof 92, Alexis Blazek 96, Grace Doppler 99.

Bismarck (360): Katie Kasper 70, Tonya Dvorak 94, Kylie Bergan 96, Carissa Craven 100, Irelyn Huntley 100, Taylor Miller 102.

Minot (365): Paige Argent 82, McKinley Bender 88, MaKensey Arlien 91, Marley Foltz 104, Jaci Jones 108, Joelle Fettig 115.

Mandan (382): Kaycee Schulz 84, Megan Broeckel 98, Payton Roehrich 100, Cortnie Mongeon 100, Paige Clausen 103, Brianne Hirchert 110.

Dickinson (386): Sydney Charchenko 88, Rachel Lantz 93, Daisia Wallner 102, Gabby Knopik 103, Sydney Getz 110, Becca Fry 119.

Williston (402): Jami Wells 88, Madison Mehlhoff 100, Whitney Pflug 103, Ella Pederson 111.

Turtle Mountain (506): Halli Short 116, Erin Keplin 124, Nevaeh Davis 131, Tyra Jerome 135.

Legacy (No Score): Kamryn Hellman 117, Mallory Donlin 118, Logan Peterson 140. 

Sun sportswriter Chris Aarhus can be reached                      at (701) 952-8462 or caarhus@jamestownsun.com

Chris Aarhus
Aarhus has been a sportswriter for the Jamestown Sun since May of 2012. Prior to that, he was the sports editor at the Minot Daily News and The Daily Republic in Mitchell, S.D. He also worked as a sports writer at The Dickinson Press. He was honored as North Dakota's Sportswriter of the Year for 2014.
(701) 952-8462
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