Ashley Waggoner

Kearney Catholic’s Ashley Waggonerl tee's off during last year's Kearney Catholic’s Golf Invitational at Meadowlark Hills Golf Course. Waggoner is one of four players returning from last year's team that finished fourth at state.

KEARNEY — Last year, the Nebraska School Athletic Association stopped play on the second day of the Class C girls state golf tournament.

The decision to limit the tournament to just the Day 1 results ruined the Kearney Catholic’s chance at winning a state title. They had taken the lead in the team scoring on the second day before play was called due to weather and had to settle for fourth place.

The Stars shot an 18-hole team score of 397, which was seven strokes behind Cozad. It was a disappointing end for the Stars, but with four of the team’s top five golfers back this season, they are hoping to duplicate last year’s success.

Senior Addison Mitchell, who finished tied for seventh with a score of 90 at the state meet last year, is the Stars’ top returning golfer. Senior Ashley Waggoner, who placed in a tie for 14th with a 95 at state last year, also is back for the Stars.

Senior Abbie Halpin and Morgan Sheckler are returning state qualifiers, while junior MaKenna Redinger and sophomores Alexandra Splittgerber and Kaylie Stratton are returners.

Brooke Eschenbrenner is the Stars’ lone departure from last year’s state qualifying team.

“With four of the five girls returning as part of the state team and three more very talented golfers also returning, I’m looking forward to another exciting and hopefully successful season,” second-year coach Amanda Roberts said. “I’m looking forward to seeing some great things from these seven returning girls.”

The Stars begin the season at the Doniphan-Trumbull Invitational at 10 a.m. Aug. 26. They will host the Kearney Catholic High School Invitational at 9 a.m. Aug. 26 at Meadowlark Hills Golf Course.

@DanZielinski3​

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