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Lady O qualifies for state

October 4, 2016 GMT

YORK -- It was a good day for the Beatrice girls golf team Monday afternoon at the B-3 District Golf Tournament in York.

The Lady O finished third in the team standings, which qualifies them for the Class B State Tournament. Senior Kirsten Baete also picked up her third straight individual district championship.

Baete finished with a score of 72, which was eight strokes better than second place finisher Kendra Placke of Seward (80). Danica Badura of Aurora finished third with a score of 81.

“Kirsten is just a special player,” said Beatrice coach Dick Stuart. “She’s just mentally tougher this year and she’s not letting one bad shot bother her anymore and it’s showing because she’s winning and she’s winning by a lot.”

Stuart said if Baete can maintain that mental edge at state next week, she can do some more special things.

“She just needs to worry about her game,” Stuart said. “There are going to be some other good golfers there, but if she just focuses and takes care of the things that she can control, she can have a great state tournament.”

Lady O senior Sidney Hartig also earned a medal. Her score of 99 was good enough for 10th place individually.

“We needed Sidney to find a way to finish in the top 10 and she did that,” Stuart said. “She played really well on the front nine and struggled a bit on the back nine, but she was definitely a top 10 player in that district, so she deserved a top 10 finish.”

As a team, Beatrice finished with a score of 404, which put them 23 strokes ahead of fourth place Adams Central (427). Aurora won the team title with a score of 381 while York finished second with a 385. The top three teams qualify for state.

In addition to the two seniors, freshmen Payton Neunaber finished with a 115 while Sydney Southwick finished with a 118.

“Payton played pretty much the same on both the front and the back and she did what the team needed her to do,” Stuart said. “Sydney (Southwick) started slow, but played a fantastic second nine, shooting a 51 for a total of 118.”

Mackenzie Barnard rounded out the Beatrice scoring with a 134.

“Mackenzie had a few bad holes, which cost her,” Stuart said. “But she’s going to gain valuable experience in Columbus next week playing in a state tournament.”

Stuart said his team played the front nine well on Monday, but struggled on the back nine. He said that’s common at York Country Club.

“The back nine has some goofy holes where it’s hard to figure out where you are going,” Stuart said. “You have to play that course a lot to score well because it’s not always easy to figure out where you should be hitting the ball.”

The Class B State Championship will take place on Monday and Tuesday at Quail Run Golf Course in Columbus. Stuart said it’s good to be returning to state as a team and he’d proud of his two seniors for earning medals and leading the way.

“They did a great job of helping our freshmen become better players and getting them to realize they can do it if they just work at it a little bit,” Stuart said. “Kirsten and Sidney are great leaders and now we’ll just see what happens at state.”