Ella De Jong—Staff Writer
Dordt University’s women’s golf team broke their single-day scoring record with 336 strokes at the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) tournament on Oct. 5, 2021 at the Bluffs in Vermillion, South Dakota. The last record was set in spring of 2019 with 339 strokes.
“When that happened, I was really excited for the team,” Rachel Bostwick, a sophomore golfer, said. “Everyone else was really excited. And, we shot not only ten strokes lower to beat it, we shot twelve strokes lower.”
The Defenders finished fourth out of twelve teams, while only four strokes behind third place, Briar Cliff. Bostwick became a key factor in the success for the Defenders. She finished ninth overall at GPAC with a score of 169. Her ranking surprised her as she thought her score would not rank high enough to finish high in conference play. On day one she tallied the lowest score of the team with an 83, while she shot an 86 on day two.
“The hardest parts of the course were staying in the fairways,” Bostwick said, “and not going into the hazards. There were a lot of hazards, and a lot of trees. So, if you got into them, it was kind of hard to get out and the roof wasn’t the best. The rough was thick enough that if you got into it, you might get into some trouble.”
Bostwick also had trouble with her group feeling rushed. They were slowing other groups down, so they had to speed up their shots as a unit. Bostwick stayed focused through it all. She said even though she faced challenges on the course and other things like missing class, she concentrated on her game.
“We were all feeling good,” Bostwick said. “I was feeling good, ready to go and start playing.”
Kerri Kroeze and Emily Knoche were also key components in the new scoring record for the program and fourth place finish. Kroeze recorded an 86 on day one and 84 on day two to give her a final score of 170 strokes and a twelve-place finish. Knoche notched an 82 on day two, the lowest overall scoring for one day out of the Defender’s women’s golf team. She finished nineteenth with an overall score of 172. Gianna Van Klaveren finished 24th and Bailey Weg finished 32nd.
The women’s team had been preparing for this tournament since the beginning of the year. They golfed the same exact course in Vermillion, South Dakota about a week before. After the first GPAC day at the course, they knew everybody had to focus in order to break the single-day scoring record. The women’s golf team will finish the GPAC tournament by playing the second two rounds in the spring.
“I really appreciate all the time and effort they have been putting in,” Jon Crane, the boys’ and girls’ head golf coach, said. “And the results showed it.”