ANTIOCHCoach: Kelly McIntyre
Last season: 0-8, 10th in North Suburban Conference meet
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Key losses: none
Returning golfers: Hannah Cook (So.), Savannah Hallett (So.), Rachel Price (So.), Lena Slater (So.), Abigail Tyrell (So.)
Notable additions: Madeline McKevett (So.)
Outlook: Few teams are younger than the Sequoits, whose program returned last year. Sophomore Hannah Cook, who pitched for the varsity softball team last spring, carded the team's best round at the conference meet last fall. "Many girls took private lesson in the off-season and are continuing to learn and improve every day," coach Kelly McIntyre said. "We look to continue to improve on last year's season. We are excited about facing a variety of competition and showing how much improvement we have made over the off-season."
CARMELCoach: Jill Franz
Last season: 16-3, 9-0 in East Suburban Catholic Conference, second in Carmel regional, ninth in Buffalo Grove sectional
Key losses: Abbey Carpenter, Sophie Butz
Returning golfers: Kayla Ryan (Jr.), Alexa Amato (Jr.), Eva Savovich (Jr.), Erin Kehoe (So.)
Notable additions: Natalie Linquist (So.), Danielle Savovich (So.), Charlotte Roberts (Fr.)
Outlook: The Corsairs won their first ESCC title since 2002 last season and return the conference-meet runner-up, junior Kayla Ryan. Both Ryan and fellow junior Alexa Amato have been on varsity since their freshman year and are two-year sectional qualifiers. Junior Eva Savovich and sophomore Erin Kehoe also teed it up in the regional last year. "This team will again be strong in the ESCC and Lake County area," coach Jill Franz said. "We are still quite a young team but have a tremendous amount of talent and depth. The team goals are to defend our ESCC title, win regionals and to get the team downstate. This will be an exciting team to watch and grow this season."
GRANTCoach: A.J. Havenga
Last season: 2-11, eighth in North Suburban Conference meet, fifth in Carmel regional
Key losses: Kirsten Bank, Kaitlin Wold, Kaylie Kanzler
Returning golfers: Brianna Burgeson (Jr.), Sydney Bell (Sr.)
Notable additions: Maddy Lantz (Fr.), Kylie Diana (Fr.), Lexie Glunz (Fr.), Haley Copenhaver (Fr.)
Outlook: The Bulldogs return two veterans in junior Brianna Burgeson and junior Sydney Bell and have a number of freshmen looking to make an immediate impact. This is the Bulldogs' third season, and Burgeson has played varsity in each of the three. "With the leadership and experience from the two returners," coach A.J. Havenga said, "we are looking forward to seeing how the young team can improve over the course of the year and make strides toward a competitive finish in the conference tournament and regional."
GRAYSLAKE CO-OPCoach: Scott Ewen
Outlook: Grayslake Central and Grayslake North have a co-op team for the first time this season. At the Carmel regional last season, then-senior Shelby White (Grayslake Central), then-junior Ireland Dunne (Grayslake North), then-sophomore Kara Ahlemeyer (Grayslake North) and then-freshman Dhani McDowell (Grayslake North) qualified for the sectional.
LAKESCoach: Rebecca Schilz
Last season: ninth in North Suburban Conference meet, sixth in Carmel regional
Key losses: Alexa Mann
Returning golfers: Gretchen Metzger (Sr.), Lauren Clark (Sr.), Taylor Chisolm (Jr.)
Notable additions: Jhordin Andell (Jr.), Arden Berzon (Sr.), Jessica Cardinell (Sr.), Sarah Hoke (Sr.), Mackenzie Weis (Sr.)
Outlook: The Eagles will look for continued improvement and growth after competing as a program for the first time in several years last season. Senior Gretchen Metzger carded the Eagles' best score at the conference meet last fall.
LAKE ZURICHCoach: Mel Fox
Last season: 4-10 (2-5), seventh in North Suburban Conference meet, eighth in Prospect regional
Key losses: Megan Malcolm, Savannah Saunders, Jenni Gorey
Returning golfers: Aine Mattera (Sr.), McKenzie Czabaj (Sr.), Emily Broj (Sr.), Carolyn Radecki (Sr.), Elizabeth Viken (Jr.), Page Wallace (So.), Kaitlin Vages (So.), Ally Tucker (So.)
Notable additions: Melissa Goldberg (Jr.), Kelsey Kee (Fr.), Erin MacDonald (Fr.), Alexandria Leitl (Fr.), Kathleen Murphy (Fr.), Amanda Russo (Fr.)
Outlook: Senior Aine Mattera played in many IJGA and MAJGT tournaments this summer and is one of the best golfers in the county. She qualified for the sectional last fall. "Her game has improved tremendously," coach Mel Fox said. "It will be fun to watch her play this year." Junior Elizabeth Viken and sophomore Page Wallace will also be playing on varsity this year. Freshman Kelsey Kee has earned a varsity spot as well. "The rest of the team will compete for the varsity positions," Fox said. "It will be fun to watch freshmen Alexandria Leitl and Erin MacDonald compete for varsity also. Our main focus this season will be to improve our short game, as all the girls want to shoot personal bests. We have many drills we will use to help improve our game around the green. I have played golf since I was 11, and I still spend my practice time chipping and putting. Our goal this year is to have a winning season."
LIBERTYVILLECoach: Greg Pedersen
Last season: 10-3 (5-2), first in North Suburban Conference meet, third in Carmel regional, eighth in Buffalo Grove sectional
Key losses: Emma Hoskins, Tressa Freberg
Returning golfers: Simone Mikaelian (So.), Megan Sturonas (So.), Jessica Lovinger (Sr.), Katherine Stegman (Jr.), Maggie Piazzi (Jr.), Reilly Burnetti (Sr.), Sara Keefe (Sr.)
Notable additions: none
Outlook: The Wildcats return six of the seven golfers they had in the lineup for the conference meet last fall. The lone girl who graduated was Emma Hoskins, who shot a team-best 80. Simone Mikaelian, who fired an 84 at the conference meet, capped a great freshman season by qualifying for state. The Wildcats' 2013 campaign also included winning their own invite and finishing second in a 16-team tournament. "Last year we learned some lessons about the need for consistency, and we feel primed now to have a good season," coach Greg Pedersen said. "We plan to contend for the NSC championship, perform well in our tournament schedule, and play our best golf in October." The Wildcats opened the season Monday with a 330, tying for second in a tough field at the Barrington Invite. "That's our best team score ever," Pedersen said. "And the kids are talking about the shots they left on the course, hoping to improve next time out. They're a hungry, hardworking group."
MUNDELEINCoach: Barb Hartwig
Last season: third in North Suburban Conference meet, first in Carmel regional, 10th in Buffalo Grove sectional
Key losses: Courteney Fabbri, Cristina Loverde, Lorrielle Martin
Returning golfers: Jr. Megan Wiese, Sr. Holly Petlak, Sr. Shannon Streeter
Outlook: The Mustangs enjoyed a historical season last year, winning the first regional championship in their nine-year history, as senior Courteney Fabbri's runner-up finish led the way. Megan Wiese capped her sophomore season by placing sixth in the regional.
STEVENSONCoach: Tom Dineen
Last season: 6-6, fourth in North Suburban Conference meet, fourth in Prospect regional
Key losses: Nikki Marquardt (Tulsa)
Returning golfers: Alexia Fidman (Jr.), Surya Vijayasankar (Sr.), Stephanie Namkoong (Sr.), Myra Peterson (Jr.), Maddie Schaetzlein (Jr.)
Notable newcomers: Olivia Hancock (Fr.), Olivia Stomberg (Fr.)
Outlook: Hall-of-fame girls basketball coach Tom Dineen will coach different kinds of shot-makers this fall, as he takes over a squad that graduated Nikki Marquardt. A Tulsa recruit, Marquardt captured medalist honors in the North Suburban Conference meet and qualified for state. Senior Surya Vijayasankar and junior Alexia Fidman also qualified for the sectional. "We will obviously miss Nikki, so we must rely on team balance, which I believe we have," Dineen said. "We have a tough and heavy early-season schedule. We will find out early how we stack up in preparation for the upcoming conference schedule."
VERNON HILLSCoach: Jim Seward
Last season: 2-8 (2-4), fifth in North Suburban Conference meet, fifth in Prospect regional
Key losses: Shannon Healey, Katherine Koczwara
Returning golfers: Kari Lee (Sr.), Faith Jung (So.) Fayth Kim (Sr.), Mary Paulson (Sr.)
Notable additions: Ally Ripes (So.)
Outlook: The Cougars return a pair of sectional qualifiers in senior Kari Lee and sophomore Faith Jung. Fayth Kim and Mary Paulson provide the team two other seniors. "We will be a senior-heavy varsity squad that will make a good run at qualifying as a team from the regional to the sectional," coach Jim Seward said. "Kari Lee and Faith (Jung) will have an outside shot at qualifying to the state tournament as individuals."
WARRENCoach: Leigh Ann Mondrawickas-Boncher
Last season: 3-4, sixth in North Suburban Conference meet, fourth in Carmel regional
Key losses: Gabby Cordova, Kelly Kaiser, Rachel Berzin
Returning golfers: Erica Price (Sr.), Izzy Cordova (Jr.), Katrina Steffy (So.), Anna Telling (So.)
Notable newcomers: Jeanie Kasper (Sr.), Nicole Urquhart (So.), Ellie Bousson (Fr.), Annika Johnson (Fr.)
Outlook: The Blue Devils qualified four golfers for the sectional last season, and senior Erica Price and junior Izzy Cordova return. The Blue Devils shot a school-record 358 in last year's Barrington invite and had several good freshmen out. Three -- Katrina Steffy, Nicole Urquhart and Anna Telling -- were in the lineup for the Blue Devils' season opener last Monday. "We have a great group of athletes who are eager to learn more about golf," said Leigh Ann Mondrawickas-Boncher, who's in her 11th season as coach. Mondrawickas-Boncher adds that her team's strengths include "experienced returning players who have ability to be scoring leaders and leave a mark in Warren golf history, depth of new players who possess great foundational skills for the sport, and the desire and work ethic to improve upon those skills."