STATE GOLF: Kaylee Benson’s hole-in-one highlights Day 1 of the state golf tournamentJORDAN — It would be incredibly cliché to say Day 1 of the Class AA golf state tournament was a hole-in-one Tuesday, but thanks to Jackson County Central’s Kaylee Benson, there’s no other way to describe it.
JORDAN — It would be incredibly cliché to say Day 1 of the Class AA golf state tournament was a hole-in-one Tuesday, but thanks to Jackson County Central’s Kaylee Benson, there’s no other way to describe it.
On the par-3 15th hole at the Ridges at Sand Creek golf course in Jordan, Benson sunk a hole-in-one. Not one to show much emotion, Benson went about her business after driving her shot every bit of the 85 yards she estimated she needed.
“My first thought was to go put my club back in my bag,” Benson said.
Luckily for Benson, the crowd helped her find her ball.
“When I started walking back to my bag, I heard the crowd roar and I saw my brother put his arms up,” Benson said. “After that, I just smiled.
“I knew it was going to be a close shot. It was downwind and downhill and I hit the ridge on the side of the hole and it just went left toward the hole and went in.”
It was Benson’s first career hole-in-one and it was such a shocker, even gramma was worried.
“My gramma asked me if my heart was beating when I walked to the green,” Benson said.
There was no need for Benson to speed up her heartbeat because she knew exactly where her ball was, as, for once, she didn’t have to think about her next shot.
“It was weird to go to the green just to watch the other girls play,” Benson said.
One person, who was certainly part of the roar that informed Benson of her hole-in-one was JCC coach Mike DiBrito.
“To see one of my golfers hit a hole-in-one at the state tournament is very, very special,” DiBrito said. “What a great moment at the state tournament for Kaylee.”
More great moments could still be in store for Benson, as her 80 puts her in a tie for eighth headed into Day 2.
“I was hitting tee shots well,” Benson said. “I missed only one fairway, but I have to work on my putting.
“I had a lot of putts go right around the hole. I’m just going to hit shots, find my ball and hit more shots tomorrow.”
One person who heard the roar of the hole-in-one was Worthington’s Kate Lesnar.
“Benson was in the group right behind me and we heard them scream and we didn’t know who it was that got the hole-in-one,” Lesnar said. “We were so excited when we found out it was Kaylee.
“It’s so insane to actually get a perfect shot and have it roll in the hole. It’s so difficult. I’m really happy for her.”
Lesnar shot an 84 on the day, which was 10 strokes better than her Day 1 score from last season and put her in a tie for 22nd.
“It wasn’t as low as I would have hoped, but I think I still hit the ball well,” Lesnar said. “I struggled with longer putts, but, other than that, I did really well.
“I’m really excited for tomorrow.”
WHS coach Ron Wood was proud of the progression of Lesnar.
“She has progressed so nicely over her career,” Wood said. “She had four three-putts and one penalty shot, which kept her from the high 70s, but she’s in a great position at 22.”
Wood also couldn’t help but notice the strong representation of Southwest Conference golf.
“I think it says well of both Worthington and Jackson that we have two girls sitting in the top 25,” Wood said.
SWC’s Vreeman leads way in girls’ Class A
Southwest Christian’s Emaleigh Vreeman shot an 88 on Day 1 of the Class A state golf tournament Tuesday at Pebble Creek in Becker, which put her in a tie for 11th.
Fulda’s Tessa Kramer shot a 91 to put her in a tie for 20th.
“I had some nice drives and I got into trouble, but I got out of it,” Kramer said. “I was only in two sand traps.
“I could have done a little better on putting, but, other than that, things rolled my way today.”
Westbrook-Walnut Grove’s Abby Herding finished the day with a 106 to put her in a tie for 61st.
Walzak 4 strokes off the lead in Class A
Mountain Lake Christian’s Aaron Walzak finished with a 75 to put him in fourth overall with Cordell Weber, of Martin County West, holding first place with a 71 on the Day in the Class A boys’ tournament.
Westbrook-Walnut Grove’s Dana Madson shot a 78 to put him in a tie for eighth, Southwest Christian’s Monte DeKam finished with an 84, which put him in a tie for 32nd and Fulda’s Todd Peterson shot a 97 to put him a tie for 79th.
MCC boys end Day 1 in fourth place
Murray County Central’s boys’ golf team finished Day 1 of the Class A golf tournament in fourth place with a score of 337 on the day.
Ben Loosbrock led the way with a 78, which put him eighth overall, to go along with Grant Everson’s 85, which put him in a tie for 39th overall, and 87s from Adam Christensen and Devin Ryan, which put them in a tie for 49th overall. Devin Erickson shot an 88 and Cole DeGreeff shot a 107 for MCC as well.
Day 2 of the state tournament is today for all classes.
Daily Globe Sports Editor Chris Murphy may be reached at 376-7328.