by Bruce Strand, Sports editor
The Elk River girls golf team is in contention for a state tournament trip after a strong first day at Section 7AAA on a rainy Saturday in Hinckley.
“We are in the hunt,” said coach Dave Bleyhl. “The girls played well. It was an awful day to play. It rained all day and we stopped for lightning about five times.”
Andover led the field with 336 with Elk River and Forest Lake right behind at 338 at Grand National. Morgan Bleyhl led the Elks with 79. The top three teams advance to the final 18 holes scheduled for Monday.
The girls started the morning and were able to finish, but the boys were to play in the afternoon and the course was too wet by then. The boys are now scheduled for a one-day section tournament Monday afternoon after the girls play in the morning. However, the forecast for Monday is more rain. It will move to Tuesday if rained out Monday.
Bleyhl, a sophomore, is three strokes off the lead with her 79.
“She hits the all pretty far and she played smart, hitting to the right spots,” said the coach about his granddaughter. “She made some good putts. She had a long birdie putt both at the start and finish.”
Alexa Filipiak was next with 84. Samantha Lindeen, the No. 1 golfer, shot 85 and Morgan Dietrich 89. Bleyhl, Filipiak and Dietrich had their best rounds of the season.
“Alexa is just a little bigger but she hits the ball pretty good and she made good decisions,” said the coach.
The Elks are coming off a strong finish to the regular season when they won the conference tournament and placed a close second in the Northwest Suburban behind Andover.