Lady Bulldogs repeat as state champions
REPEAT!!! The Wheatland High School lady golfers won the Wyoming state 3A girls golf championship for the second straight year. From left Lola Philo, Macy Jones, Lily Nichols, Bryley Waring and Jazlynne Gonzales. The Wheatland Girls golf team repeated as the Wyoming State 3A girls golf champions. The girls beat their closest competitor by 25 strokes. From left: Lola Philo, Macy Jones, Lily Nichols, Bryley Waring and Jazlynne Gonzales. Golf2: The top 10 golfers in the state took the platform and were awarded “all-state” awards. Three Bulldogs, Macy Jones and Lily Nichols tied for third in the state while Bryley Waring took ninth place.
BUFFALO – Some high school golfers will never know what it’s like to get to a state tournament, much less place in the top 10. The Wheatland Bulldogs who repeated as the Wyoming state 3A girls golf champions had three girls place in the top 10 to take “all-state” honors.
Macy Jones and Lily Nichols tied for third place while Bryley Waring took ninth place. The team score was an unheard of 25 strokes better than their nearest competitor. The amazing thing about this team is they will all be back again in 2023.
In the past three years, this team has been state runner-up and twice crowned as champions. The girls will now look to three-peat.
“Our lady bulldog golfers have accomplished an amazing feat this year by winning back-to-back state championships,” head golf coach Tony Nichols said. “Getting the monkey off our back last year definitely helped our girls focus on their games and simply getting better every day. Some of the girls said they felt a lot of pressure to have to repeat as champs and bring a title back to the Wheatland community. The fact they didn't want to let down their school, peers, family, and community speaks volumes about who they are as young ladies.
“With that said, our staff insisted they reverse their thinking. We told them that by winning last year we have no pressure because we've already hoisted the trophy. The competitive teams chasing us have all the pressure to win because they hadn't won a title in many years. We told them if we win that would be amazing, but if we didn't it wouldn't take away from what we already accomplished.
“Once they realized that, the girls were able to golf without any added pressure and then focus on what they could control, which was their golf games. Their mindset this week was all business. As coaches, we could see that the belief in each other and camaraderie the entire week was a recipe for success. They went out and played for each other and the rest is history. The lady bulldogs prevailed over new 3A Class foe Evanston for a 25-shot victory with a two-day total of 552.”
Lily Nichols and Macy Jones set the pace by firing rounds of 86 and 87 which left them in third and fourth place after day one. Bryley Waring (104) was in 14th, Lola Philo (112) tied for 22nd, and Jazlynne Gonzalez (143) 44th.
“After the first day we had a 13 shot lead which was nice, but as any golfer knows, no lead is safe,” Nichols said. “In stroke play one or two blow up holes by any player can change the team standings in a hurry. On day two Evanston's girls chipped away at the lead early on, but our girls did not take long to get back on track. Day two was a complete team effort as they all handled their business and ended up beating Evanston by 12 shots on day two alone.”
On day two the girls were led by Jones (88), Nichols (89), and Waring (98), while Philo (102) and Gonzalez (141) improved as well. Nichols and Jones tied for third overall with two day totals of 175, Waring placed ninth with a 202, Philo 18th with a 212, and Gonzalez 45th with a 284. Nichols and Jones earned their third straight all-state selection and Waring earned her second in a row.
The boys golfers finished in 11th place with a two day total of 753.
“It was no surprise we were once again led by sophomores Brecken Sandlian (90-86) and Dylan Nelson (91-88) who finished in a tie for 20th and 25th respectively. Our staff is very impressed with what these boys accomplished this year as they both concluded their sophomore campaigns by averaging in the 80's.”
They were follwed by freshman Cooper Meyer (100-92) who tied for 44th, Matthew Wakkuri (104-102) who tied for 62nd, and Wyatt Fitzwater (104-104) who finished in 66th place.
“I know the boys did not have the finish they were hoping for at state, but they have no reason to hang their heads,” Nichols said. “It is unbelievable how quickly the golf season concludes. As they say, all good things must come to an end. I must say this golf season has been a memorable one for our players and coaching staff. This season has been filled with team victories, top 10 finishes, all-conference and all-state awards. Most importantly, our golf program is in a great place right now. Our girls’ team is creating history and our boys’ team is poised for a successful run moving forward. We are blessed to have strong support from the Wheatland golf community and we look forward to representing them with class and continued success.”