FORSYTH -- Chris Patrick has witnessed first-hand the evolution of girls prep golf over the last decade-plus at St. Charles North.
"We were hoping to shoot under 650 (for a two-day total coming into the tournament)," Patrick said Saturday afternoon after St. Charles North improved its second-day total by 3 shots to place ninth in the 12-team field of the Class AA state tournament at Hickory Point Golf Course.
"In my first year (2003) we shot 697 and finished second," Patrick said after his current edition shaved that total by 30 strokes, only to finish ninth in the 12-team field. "The talent is so much deeper. In order to place at the state meet, you need four girls shoot in the 70s."
Prospect fired a second-day 309 cumulative total to reverse a 4-shot Loyola first-round lead for its second state championship in three years.
The North Stars have been led by two freshmen, Gi Furrie and Kate Lillie, as well as senior transfer Carly Hudon, all season.
Saturday at the par-72 layout, Lillie fired a team-low 76 to conclude her productive first year in the program.
"I made 3 birdies, so that really helped my score," Lillie said. "I was able to get my approach shots close to the pin a majority of the time. My putting was very good."
Hudon ended her golfing career with a much-improved second-round day, finishing with an 81.
"It was a decent weekend," Hudon said. "I had one or two bad holes. It was nice to be here with my team. It was one of those days where I thought I could score lower."
Hudon played on the Sycamore boys team her first three years in high school.
Furrie, the North Stars' top-ranked player all season, fired an 84; Jessica Grill completed the 332 team score with a 91 in her final appearance in the program.
At the Class A state tournament in neighboring Decatur, Rosary finished in 11th place as Victoria Phipps, making her second straight state appearance, led the Royals with an 85-81 score over the weekend.
Fellow senior Annika Strolle had a 93 for Rosary to post its second-best final-round score.