Netishinga, West Chicago dazzle
Bing Singhsumalee threatened to reduce Springbrook Golf Course to oblivion on Wednesday afternoon.
The Waubonsie Valley junior, the reigning State Amateur champion, was an equal number under par after her sixth hole after blitzing the Naperville layout with an eagle and 4 birdies.
But West Chicago ended up stealing the thunder in the Upstate Eight Conference girls golf triangular with Batavia.
Singhsumalee stumbled with back-to-back bogeys on her final two holes, and the Wildcats' Hanna Netisingha fired a career-low nine-hole match score of 1-under to 35 to lead the Wildcats to the lowest team score in their 17-year history.
West Chicago and Waubonsie Valley tied with 168 totals, but senior Amanda O'Mahoney carried the day for the Wildcats with a fifth-card tiebreaking score of 47. Batavia dropped both matches with its 209 total.
"This is my very first bogey-free round," said Netisingha, a returning state qualifier, who birdied her opening hole and ended the idyllic afternoon with eight consecutive pars.
Three of the pars for the Wildcats' senior leader were brilliant saves, converting an up-and-down on the lone green she missed in regulation — the par-4 third hole — and equally clutch 15-footers on Nos. 7 and 9.
"It really helped me out to make those (par) putts," Netisingha said. "I'm really happy for Bing. I'm not really worried about what other people shoot. I worry about my own game."
The Thailand-born Singhsumalee was a machine over her first seven holes.
The junior drained an 18-footer at the first for a birdie, only to save her shot of the day at the par-5 second.
Launching a bullet right-to-left draw from just under 200 yards, Singhsumalee converted the subsequent eagle-3 from under 5 feet.
After a routine par at the third, Singhsumalee converted a 24-footer for a deuce at the fourth, followed by a birdie from 10 feet at the par-5 fifth.
Singhsumalee then stiffed her approach at the par-4 sixth to under three feet for her third consecutive birdie.
"I was wondering if I could break 30," Singhsumalee said after needing only 7 putts over the first six holes. "I wasn't really thinking about my score, though. I was trying to play the golf course."
Singhsumalee had a 3-footer lip out for a 3-putt bogey on No. 8, and an errant tee shot left her wondering what could have been as she settled for a 4-under 32.
"I was disappointed (in the immediate aftermath) but am not anymore," said Singhsumalee.
West Chicago four-year varsity member Tessa Dittmann had a 42, and the Wildcats caught the short-handed Warriors — playing only five players — behind Elyssa Dorado (45) and Haley Carney (46).
"I could have done better," Dittman said. "It is nice to be apart of (the new school record). It's a great achievement."
Waubonsie Valley received its three other counting scores from Rebecca O'Bryan, Caitlin Fernandez and Kayla McHale.
Batavia was never in contention on the afternoon as its top two players, Lauren Anderson and Becca Hasemann, ere both hampered by illness. Hasemann did not even make the trip, and Anderson struggled trying to match the brilliance of Singhsumalee and Netisingha.
Anderson did manage to fashion some solid pars in the middle of her round, but she and the Bulldogs' second-ranked player, Candace Eamon, both settled for 52s.
Sophomore Emily Clark led Batavia (1-4, 1-4) with a 50; Erin Ewart had a 56 to conclude the Batavia scoring.
"There have some amazing teams in this conference," Batavia coach Morgan Connell said. "I bet they're having a lot of fun. We are having some positives. I tell the girls, 'It's just golf.'"
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