OAKHURST – “I want to introduce all of you to the 2014 D-II CIF Central Section Champions,” says Yosemite High School coach Rusty Oetinger following the team’s recent win. “I am so proud of my girls.”
Yosemite Badgers girls golf took home the top honors on Monday, Oct. 27 for division championship at Madera Golf & Country Club.
“The girls won, but it wasn’t without giving their coach a scare first,” Oetinger adds, after some understandable nerves almost got in the way.
“I was marshalling in a group behind my top three girls. Apparently, the three were so nervous that they played the worst nine holes of the season.”
Jessica Rudd shot 46, Kelsi Stieler shot 47 and Claire Oetinger shot 48. A week before, all three girls had qualified for the individual valley tournament. Coach Oetinger was having a hard time watching his team perform below their standard, in a showing Claire Oetinger considered one of her poor scores and later called, “horrible.” Still, they managed to prevail at the end of a fun and notable season.
“Following them after the first nine was agonizing,” continued the coach. “We were only two shots ahead of Bakersfield Christian at that point. To give you an idea of why it shouldn’t have been close, the week before, Bakersfield Christian shot a team score of 470, Lemoore shot 490 and we shot 416. We played so well that we only finished nine strokes behind Buchanan. Despite the scare we won by 34 strokes.”
The girls and their coach consider themselves a family of sorts, and each is equally proud of the other for this first-time D-II Championship and other accolades that may come in the future.
More recently, on Tuesday, Nov. 4, Jessica Rudd and Kelsi Stieler qualified for the California state Southern Sectional Tournament in San Bernadino. Stay tuned for more.
Pictured are, left to right, Claire Oetinger, Hailey Abrahams, Libby Haggard, Jessica Rudd, Kelsi Stieler and Jordyn Ahrens.