When the dust settled on Pinehurst No.1 Monday evening, the Scotland varsity girl’s golf team had accomplished several of the goals it set for itself at the beginning of the season.
From the very start, Scotland coach Gary Barfield hoped to send no less than five of his players to regional competition. With mere days until regionals begin, the Fighting Scots did exactly that, as Ashley Barringer, Kaylan Ganus, Caitlin McCormick, Gabby Gualtieri and Alison Critcher all qualified. Every Scotland senior on the team was part of the five players that made it to regionals this year.
Scotland also finished second overall in the Southeastern Conference behind perennial powerhouse Pinecrest.
“We can’t control what Pinecrest did, because that’s a really good team right there,” Barfield said. “But as far as this team goes, we played at exactly the level I thought we could this season, and I’m really proud of these girls. I’m especially proud of the seniors because they all get a chance to play at regionals next week.”
The Fighting Scots came in second at their very last team match of the regular season on Monday. With her 91 at Pinehurst no.1, Barringer would be the top-scorer for Scotland as she has been in five of the six matches played in 2012. Three strokes off of Barringer’s pace would be Ganus with a 94, and she was followed by Gualtieri and McCormick who both shot a 97.
Pinecrest was the team to beat all season long, and they remained true to form in their last match. The Patriots were led by Gabby Weiss, who was the number one-ranked player in the conference and finished her 2012 regular season with a 72. Megan Munroe of Hoke County had the second-best score of the day, shooting a 76 for a Bucks squad that saw the rest of the team average above 100 during the season.
In addition to achieving regional honors, two of Scotland’s players were also named to the All-Conference squad which selects the top 10 players from the Southeastern Conference. They were Barringer and Ganus, who were ranked sixth and ninth-place out of 10, respectively.
McCormick narrowly missed the top 10 herself, as an illness that kept her out of the second match of the season placed her at a disadvantage when the final selections were made. She would finish as the 11th-best player in the conference, behind Pinecrest’s Chrissy Boals with a final scoring average just a half stroke behind the Patriots’ fifth-best player. Other notables included Gualtieri and Critcher, who finished as the 12th and 14th best players in the conference.
While the Fighting Scots lacked a truly dominant player that paced the rest of the team, Barfield praised Scotland’s consistency as the reason they finished second overall in the conference.
“We didn’t have any top five players this year, but what we did have was five very, very good players that were consistent all year long,” Barfield said. “We were solid this year, and now as a team we have one final goal to reach, which is qualifying our players for the state tournament.”
To accomplish a berth in the state playoffs, Scotland will have to log an impressive showing at Pinehurst No. 6 this Tuesday afternoon at 2:00 p..m.