BELMONT — For the first time in 13 seasons, the Greenville Yellow Jackets girls golf team did not win its conference title.
What they did do on Monday was tie the 18-hole school record (343), while winning the O-K Bronze postseason tournament. In doing so, the Yellow Jackets got over their final hump and defeated Forest Hills Eastern by one stroke (344), after coming within a just shots of the Hawks a few times this season.
Forest Hills Northern shot 400, West Catholic 423, Cedar Springs 439 and Northview 469. The tournament was played at Boulder Creek Golf Course.
Greenville’s 343 tied the school record set in 2007.
Greenville coach Nancy Johnson said the competition between the Yellow Jackets and Hawks was great all season long.
“They didn’t sweep the league and three times we were close,” Johnson said. “It kept things interesting and they (Eastern) could never relax. They are a great team and it was great competition for both of us.”
Forest Hills Eastern — rated No. 2 in Division 3 — won the preseason conference tournament and all six league jamborees. The Yellow Jackets finished second in each of those matches.
While winning a league title has become common, Johnson said second place isn’t a bad thing.
“No. You have to ask is second place so terrible?” she said. “I don’t think so. I think the girls have a lot to be proud of. They worked very hard and never once gave up and said we can’t beat them.”
Individually, defeating Eastern was no problem for Greenville senior Britta Bernth. Bernth won the individual conference championship with a round of 74. She was match medalist in all but one conference event this season, while averaging 38.4 per round.
“She was beaten once this season in the league,” Johnson said. “She had a goal and a determination and did it. She was up against some challenging Forest Hills Eastern players and still won.”
Jessica Bohner shot 83 and Lauryn Day and Karli Didion shot matching 93s. Seniors Bohner and Day earn all-conference honors, while Didion was named honorable mention as a sophomore.
“She should really be excited about earning honorable mention as a sophomore,” Johnson said of Didion. “She came on to the varsity this year and that is something that should give her a boost to be the best she can be.”
Henna Singh and Jordan DuVall finished in second place as both Hawks fired 80s.
“The first nine holes didn’t seem to be that bad with the wind,” Johnson said. “The back nine, the wind was brutal. In fact, you could almost see the ball moving on the green as the girls went to putt.”
The focus for the Yellow Jackets will now turn to their final tournaments and preparing for the Division 2 regional tournament.
Wednesday’s Greenville Invitational has been canceled.
“We are very disappointed about that, but there is nothing we can do about it,” Johnson said. “We look forward to having our own invitational. It’s a downer not being able to play it, especially for the seniors.”
The Yellow Jackets will play Monday at the Birningham Seaholm — No. 3 in Division 2 — Invitational and at the Ernie Popiel Invitational at Egypt Valley Country Club on Oct. 3.
“We will be playing against some of the best teams in the state,” Johnson said of Birmingham Invitational. “The top teams from Detroit and Lansing will also be there.”
The regional tournament will take place on Oct. 10 as the Yellow Jackets host at The Links at Bowen Lake. The top three teams advance to the state tournament, which will be at The Meadows at Grand Valley State.
O-K Bronze honors
O-K Bronze All-Conference
Britta Bernth Greenville
Jessica Bohner Greenville
Melissa Cox FH Northern
Lauryn Day Greenville
Jordan DuVall FH Eastern
Kate Glazer FH Eastern
Kylie Hamilton FH Northern
Anne Parlmer FH Eastern
Kelsey Sands FH Eastern
Henna Singh FH Eastern
Emily Smithson FH Eastern
Karli Didion Greenville
Catherine Hagenbush FH Northern
Kate Kraus West Catholic
Katie Viscokis West Catholic
Bre White Cedar Springs
Kenzi Wright FH Northern