Heart River girls golf compete in national invitational
State champion Heart River girls golf team participates in High School Golf National Invitational.
PINEHURST, N.C. — Six girls from Heart River High School represented North Dakota in the fourth annual girls High School Golf National Invitational from June 27 through June 29 at the Pinehurst Resort in North Carolina. Although none of the girls placed at the top of the leaderboard, their invitation to the tournament alone was a huge accomplishment.
The invitation-only competition welcomed 224 of the top high school golfers from across the country who won their respective state championships as a team or as an individual. The three-day, 54-hole stroke play event featured individual and team competition for the High School Golf National Title. Teams consisted of five or six players, but only the top four scores for each day counted toward the team score.
“It was an honor to be there,” Kirby Robb, girls golf head coach said. “I told the girls just be happy you’re here, there’s hundreds of thousands of girls who aren’t here… It was a prestige course to play on.”
Kirby Robb began coaching Heart River’s girls golf program in 2008. This was the team's first time at the national tournament.
Grace Nantt, Grace Arthaud, Mackenzee Schneider, Madisen Jarrett, Megan Robb and Molly Robb represented North Dakota at the event.
The girls hadn’t competed since their state championship last fall (eight months ago) because their golf course was closed to be redone. With little practice before the tournament, the girls were a little rusty.
“By the end of the day, they really started playing well,” Kirby Robb said. “It was a lot of fun, but they were a little nervous… They improved every day and really got back into the swing.”
Molly Robb led the girls in team play, with the best gross scores on days two and three of the tournament. She also led the girls in individual play with a total gross score of 277 after the conclusion of three rounds.
Georgia’s Lambert High School claimed the first place team title for their second consecutive year after finishing with a 24-over, 880 (292-287-301) total.
Hamilton High School’s Jennifer Seo of Chandler, Arizona won the individual title. She carded a final-round 67 to move up five spots on the individual leaderboard and finished with a total of 211 (73-71-67).
“This was by far the biggest golf competition I’ve ever attended,” Megan Robb said. “I loved meeting new people and I love the joy golf brings me when I play.”
The best part of the competition for Megan Robb was getting a birdie on a par 3 the first day. For the Robb sisters (Megan and Molly), having their dad as their coach has been an incredible experience because they have an opportunity to ask for help and get extra coaching at any time. They also enjoy competing against each other at tournaments.
“Our dad is always willing to go out and golf with us or help us fix our swing,” Molly Robb said. “Golf challenges me to go further and be better…this competition meant a ton and it is something that I will remember for the rest of my life.”