Wa-Hi's Huntsman off to state golf tourney

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RICHLAND - Jessica Huntsman is making her first trip to the state tournament.

The sophomore golfer for Wa-Hi overcame a 9 on the third hole of par-72 Columbia Point at the district tournament Monday to post a 79 (good for fourth place) and earn a trip to Meadow Wood in Spokane.

"You could just see her maturity level throughout the round," Wa-Hi coach Mike Patterson said. "Some people could get so frazzled that it could possibly ruin your entire round when you score a 9, but she was able to hang in there and lock down that fourth spot."

Huntsman had three birdies on the day, including the first hole. She went out in 41 strokes and came back in 38.

Richland's Kristin Strankman, the Big Nine girl golfer of the year, took first overall with an even-par 72 to lead the Bombers to a first-place finish.

The top nine finishers advance to state. Wa-Hi's Kendall Dunovant, also a sophomore, was six strokes out of qualifying with a 98.

"She (Dunovant) had some really good swings," Patterson said. "It was just one of those days where the ball was just rolling over the edge (of the cup), taking a peek at the hole, and deciding to roll on by. I saw so many girls today lipping puts.

"If a few more of those had dropped today, she would have been in the hunt," Patterson said of Dunovant.

Marisa Jimenez took third out of the Blue Devils, 17th overall, with a 103. Shanna Postlewait carded a 109 to round out the Blue Devil counters.

"It was another really good showing for the young Blue Devils," Patterson said. "All of the girls really improved thoughout the season.

"We're just going to have to keep improving as much as we can, because next year we want to be the team that everyone is gunning for," Patterson said. "It's something that we're going to have to work for, but the possibility is there."

Wa-Hi, which placed third for the season, placed third at the district championship with a team score of 110. Richland won the title with a 163 and Wenatchee took runner up with a 118.

Richland had three out of the top five finishers.

Hunstman will make the trip to MeadowWood May 22-23.

Patterson said her goal was to place in the top 10 finishers.

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