With talent returning, the Fort Mill and Nation Ford girls’ golf teams look to improve on last year.
Fort Mill returns three seniors and one junior to the team and will be guided under new head coach Bryan Zulka. Former head coach Steve Gribble will assist Zulka in the transition process this season.
“They played a lot last year,” Zulka said, of his returning talent. “We got a couple young ones we are excited about.”
One of those Zulka is referring to is freshman Ashley Babinchak. His returning players are junior Devin Sallenger and seniors Catherine Blum, Randi Smith and Marissa Grodi.
Fort Mill opens the season Sept. 2 at the Palmetto Preview at Mid-Carolina Golf Club. The Lady Jackets will finish the regular season with four straight home matches between Sept. 29 and Oct. 8 before hosting the Region III-AAAA tournament Oct. 13 at Fort Mill Golf Club.
Lady Falcons on upswing
At Nation Ford, Lady Falcons head coach Jaybe Shackleford is confident his team will be on the upswing this season.
“We are much better than we were last year,” Shackleford said. “They have improved a lot over the summer.”
Led by lone senior Shannon Maguire, Nation Ford will open Sept. 8 at the South Pointe Invitational at Pinetuck Golf Club in Rock Hill.
Shackleford said a key to success this year is how his No. 2-4 players perform. Those players are juniors Cameron Levosky and Francesca Ferrell and freshman Hannah Beckner.
“They look a lot better this year,” Shackleford said. “It’s nice to have returning players.”
Shackleford said he feels Nation Ford can finish in the top four in the region this year with the exiting of South Pointe, which moved to the 3A ranks.
“We should be able to compete,” he said.
Nation Ford will also finish the season by playing locally often between Sept. 29 and the region tournament in late fall, with two of those dates at Fort Mill Golf Club and two at home at Springfield Golf Club.