TRAVERSE CITY — With a new girls golf season underway, the Greenville Yellow Jackets girls golf team has their sights on a conference championship and beyond.
With 10 consecutive O-K White Conference titles and multiple trips to the Division 2 state finals, why wouldn’t you?
They get the chance to do so in the new O-K Bronze conference with mostly new competition. The lone remaining league rival is Northview. Also entering the league are Forest Hills Northern, Forest Hills Eastern, GR West Catholic and Cedar Springs.
The Yellow Jackets began the season Thursday with a second place finish behind three-time defending Division 2 state champion Muskegon Mona Shores, but ahead of former league foe East Grand Rapids.
As always, the Yellow Jackets are set to compete against the best in the state all season long to help with postseason preparation.
On Monday, the Yellow Jackets finished the day in third place at the Traverse City Invitational. Playing the par 72 Wolverine course, Greenville fired a 355, which is behind Traverse City Central’s 350 and East Lansing’s 352.
Kalamazoo Hackett is in fourth with 366 and Flushing is fifth with 376.
Britta Bernth led Greenville with an 80, Jessica Bohner 84. Lauryn Day 92 and Karli Didion a 99.
“We are in the hunt and expect to play our best and looking for a good day tomorrow,” Greenville coach Nancy Johnson said.
The Yellow Jackets return three letter winners from a year ago in Bernth, Day and Bohner. Gone are Jessica Meloche and Tori Sanders.
The combination of those five helped the Yellow Jackets to tie the school’s best ever showing at the state finals with a third place finish, which was also accomplished in the fall of 2007.
“I expect this team, like teams before them, to represent Greenville in a positive way and to finish in the top ten in any of our scheduled tournaments across the state,” Johnson said. “I am looking for this team to work hard to hang on to the success in the conference.”
Johnson said, “We have no intention of giving the O-K Conference title away to any team without a fight.”
With that being said, Johnson is referring to Forest Hills Eastern Hawks. Eastern finished fourth in Division 3 a year ago, but was state champion in the same division in 2010. That followed a runner-up spot in 2009.
“We are facing a tremendous challenge when we match up against Forest Hills Eastern,” Johnson said. “With the experience of our top three players I know they can hold their own against them.”
The deciding factor could come from the fourth member of the Greenville squad.
“We will be looking for the fourth score from our new varsity members to solidify the success in winning a conference title in the O-K Bronze,” Johnson said.
The Yellow Jackets will meet the challenge real soon.
After day two in Traverse City today, the Yellow Jackets will compete in the O-K Bronze preconference tournament hosted by Northview on Wednesday at Boulder Creek.