Kendel Abrams shot a 79 and the Susquehannock Warriors won Thursday's York-Adams Division II golf match at Cool Creek Golf Club in Wrightsville. Elijah Armold, York Dispatch
When you’re trying to help lead your team to a division title, your focus needs to be resolute each time you compete.
It nearly wasn’t Thursday for Susquehannock golfer Kendel Abrams.
First, there was some confusion as to where the afternoon’s York-Adams League Division II match was taking place.
“I was kind of shocked at first,” Abrams said. “My coach can tell you; for the whole ride over I thought we were playing Honey Run. Then I come to find out we’re playing Cool Creek.”
Adding to the surprise was the modified layout that awaited the day’s participants in Wrightsville. Because of a coaches' decision, the golfers played the course’s par-36 front nine twice.
However, Abrams locked in just in time to fire a team-low 79, helping the Warriors stave off a tough challenge from Dover.
Susquehannock won the match with a team total of 336, the Eagles were second with 339 and York Suburban finished third at 354. The win keeps the Warriors undefeated and in the driver’s seat of the Division II standings at 24-0.
Abrams’ 79 was good enough for a third-place finish individually. Littlestown’s Devin Peart took medalist honors with a 75, but the Thunderbolts only fielded two competitors and did not place as a team.
Dover’s Logan Snyder was runner-up with a 76.
Taking advantage of her length: The key to Abrams’ success was taking advantage of her length off the tee on the par-5 holes.
“No. 6 was my favorite hole, absolutely. I had about 170, almost 169 yards in to the pin every single time and that’s a par 5. I hit the green both times with my 5-iron and two putted for birdie. It was definitely fun.”
Abrams also credits experience gained over the summer during more competitive regional events in sharpening her short game. That short game, she said, was key in her saving a number of shots Thursday.
She’s also utilizing that summer experience to help carry out some goals she has set for both the Warriors and herself.
“Our team’s really good this year,” Abrams said. “I would love to say that we played our best today, but we obviously didn’t. But as a whole, I’d say we improved a lot since last season. Last season it was shaky because we were a young group and really didn’t know what to expect. But this year I feel like we’ve really honed our short game, we’ve got the mental pieces going as well and it’s really shown in our past scores.”
Abrams’ aim is for the Warriors to finish off their first division title since 2008 and contend for a county crown — something the 2008 squad was able to accomplish. She’d also like to put her name on the list of female county champions as an individual.
College plans: The hope then is that a strong individual postseason can help Abrams gain more collegiate exposure.
Abrams says she’s already fielding a number of offers from NCAA Division II level teams with the occasional Division I school. Her current plan is to take some more time, weigh her options and perhaps play her way into more talks with a strong senior season at Susquehannock before announcing her choice.
“As soon as you get to regionals and then states, that’s when the colleges are really watching,” Abrams said. “So I am looking forward to those tournaments.”
Host Eastern York finished fourth with a 359. Gettysburg was fifth with 361, West York came in sixth at 374 and Kennard-Dale finished seventh with 376.
Next up for the division is Monday’s tournament at Pleasant Valley.
Bacha shoots 69 to lead Central York to D-I win: At Plesant Valley, Carson Bacha fired a 69 to lead Central York to another York-Adams Division I victory.
The Panthers improved to 30-0 in D-I action.
New Oxford was second at 317, followed by Dallastown at 327, Spring Grove at 342, Red Lion at 361, Northeastern at 406 and South Western at 419.
New Oxford's Michael Robinson was second individually at 74, while South Western's John Hanson, Central's Will Gekas and New Oxford's Justin Gruver each shot 76. New Oxford's Jordan Staub was at 78, while three golfers shot 79: Red Lion's Channing Bratton, Spring Grove's Ty Gladhill and Dallastown's Michael DeRose.
Reach Elijah Armold at email@example.com.
This story was updated to correct the reason that the golfers played the back nine twice. That decision was not related to the course conditions, as was orginally reported. To constitute an official match, all players must play at least seven common holes for scoring purposes. It was decided by the coaches that, because of the threat of storms, the only way to accomplish that goal was to play the front nine twice.