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Golfers set sights on league title



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Kyla Kurczewski, Emily Cleland, Hannah Beebe, Heather Lafnear,(sitting) Coach Terry Kelley, Riley Hayes, (sitting) Claire Wolanin, Sarah Davis, Lyndsey Hurford. (click for larger version)
September 07, 2011 - It's the second year in the Oakland Activities Association for the girls golf team and head coach Terry Kelley likes his chances at winning a league title this year.

Competing in the OAA white division, Oxford will go head-to-head on the links with Bloomfield Hills Andover, Farmington, Birmingham Groves, Bloomfield Hills Lahser, the combined team of North Farmington and Farmington Hills Harrison, Troy Athens and West Bloomfield.

According to Kelley, the top competition to beat is the combo team of North Farmington/Farmington Hills Harrison and Troy Athens. "I think it will be amongst the three of us all season long to see who will win the league championship overall," Kelley said. "And it won't be decided until after the next league meet, which is right before regionals."

"No matter what the standings are then, it will be a tough one," he added.

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Leading the way for Oxford are sophomore Kyla Kurczewski and senior Hannah Beebe, the teams two leading scorers.

Also providing some score punch for the Wildcats will be junior Riley Hayes, seniors Claire Wolanin and Lyndsey Hurford and sophomore Emily Cleland.

"There is a lot of competition on the team itself for spots and that usually helps them improve their skills," Kelley said.

Kelley picked this year's captains, Wolanin and Beebe, because they are both seniors, bring veteran leadership qualities to the team and show up and work hard every day in practice.

"They are people who get their job done and that's what you look for in a captain," he added.

Even though Kelley likes the improvement he sees in the girls swings and course management, he is still working on the girls short game. "Their short game is not where it needs to be in order to be successful," he said. "They have to be better chippers and putters, and sometimes we don't spend the time on that like we should...so we are going to be spending more time on fundamentals the next couple of weeks and we'll see if that will help."

Kelley said the courses they play on in the OAA were on the same caliber of courses they played on in the Flint Metro League.

"Athens plays a public course, Groves plays a public course, Avondale plays a public course, Lahser plays a private course, West Bloomfield plays a private course, and those two are the two high-caliber caliber we play," Kelley said.

Kelley added that another year's worth of experience on the golf course should also help out his girls. He would like to thank the community and school district for all the support they have shown the golf team over the years. "It's really nice. I work with other coaches in the districts who don't have the same kind of support and you can see the difference," he said.

The girls had their first OAA white tournament on Wendesday, Aug. 31 and finished second behind North Farmington/Farmington Hills Harrison.

Oxford shot 383, 11 strokes behind the combined Farmington teams. Leading the way for the Wildcats Cleland and Kurczewski, who each shot a 93. Wolanin chipped in with a 95 and Beebe rounded out the scoring for Oxford with a 102.

Andrew Moser is a staff writer for the Oxford Leader.
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