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updated: 10/2/2013 10:33 PM

Crystal Lake co-op runs away with FVC crown

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There was no drama involved in Lexi Harkins leading the Crystal Lake Central co-op girls golf team to a Fox Valley Conference title Wednesday afternoon.

The North Carolina-bound Harkins shot a 2-over-par 74 as CLC had the top five finishers to shoot 326 and win by 83 shots at Crystal Woods Golf Club.

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But there was plenty of drama surrounding Huntley junior Gillian Young after her round of 89. It initially was a major disappointment when she learned she would be disqualified for signing a scorecard with markings made by one of her playing partners in the hole-by-hole score boxes, which could technically be considered as incorrect numbers.

Tournament rules committee members consulted rule books and local course professionals. They even tried to call the United States Golf Association office, which was closed, to get some help while Young, her teammates (including 14th-place finisher Zoe Dowell), family members and coaches nervously awaited a final ruling.

Crystal Lake coach Kathy Speaker, Jacobs coach Megan Placko and Huntley coach Ann Christiansen finally returned from the clubhouse with the news. Young was now shedding tears of joy as it was determined there was no intent to violate the scoring rules and her 89 would count for a sixth-place finish and help her team take second.

"Oh my gosh," an emotion-filled Young said. "When they came out of the clubhouse I was really nervous and scared. I'm really grateful and really happy.

"There were little dashes that were small and I didn't think it was that big of a deal, but it was. When they first told me (I was disqualified), my heart stopped beating."

Young said she felt good about shooting 44 on the front nine despite one bad hole. But she admitted the day could have been a lot worse.

"I'll look at it twice as much as I did before," Young said of her scorecard. "Now I'll be even more careful before I sign anything."

Harkins, who won the FVC title as a sophomore but didn't play high school golf last fall, won by 8 shots over teammate Larisa Luloff.

"Overall it went pretty well, but there were definitely things to improve on for regionals," Harkins said of some putting issues. "I thought the setup was pretty difficult and the greens were all pretty fast, but it played pretty fair."

Luloff was hoping to better the 78 she shot in last year's FVC tournament at Crystal Woods.

"I wanted to shoot as low as I could but it didn't quite happen today," Luloff said. "I'm very familiar with (the course) and they made the greens faster and that made it difficult to keep iron shots on the green.

"My driver was awful and on some of the longer holes it left me with distance to cover to save myself. I have some work to do (before next Wednesday's regional)."

Bailey Bostler (83), Emily Jean (87) and Brianna DiGrazia (87) finished 3-4-5. Lauren Kalamaras (94) was eighth and Alex Siavelis (99) was 13th.

"We can all play better but I think we're in a good spot," Luloff said.

Grayslake North junior Ireland Dunne took seventh with a 93. Dunne played most of the season with the boys team since the school doesn't field a full girls lineup.

"I had a great time playing with the girls I played with and it was great competition today," Dunne said. "Playing with the boys definitely boosts up my distance and my confidence, too. But I like playing with the girls because it's a lot more equal competition.

"My putting was way off and I should have done a lot better, but my drives were very good and none of them were short of 200 yards."

Grayslake North's other two golfers, underclassmen Dhani McDonnell and Kara Ahlemeyer, shot 103 and 104 respectively. Grayslake Central, which had four players, was led by a 103 from Madlyn Yarc and a 106 from Shelby White.

"If we could combine North and Central, I feel we'd have a pretty strong team," Dunne said.

Grayslake North coach Tim Hough said this is the largest number of players he's had. He said there has been some talk of trying to co-op with Central like Crystal Lake Central does with Crystal Lake South and Cary-Grove.

"I'd really love to (have a full team)," Hough said. "If we got the girls to compete with other girls at these tournaments I think they would enjoy it more. It would be nice to combine the two schools like Crystal Lake Central has."

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