Lady Panthers finish an outstanding season

The team celebrates their third consecutive Regional Championship. (Submitted Photo)

One week after winning the regional, the Lady Panthers fell just short of their goal of a fourth consecutive trip to the state tournament.  

Behind Chloe Davidson’s 79 at the challenging University of Illinois Orange course in Champaign, the Lady Panthers finished fifth in the sectional, just three strokes from advancing.  Other top scores for O’Fallon were Sophie Koesterer with 88, Dylan Kirchoff with 89, and Elizabeth Henken with 92. Davidson, who finished fourth in the tournament, will be O’Fallon’s lone representative at this weekend’s state tournament at Hickory Point in Decatur.  

O’Fallon finishes an outstanding season with nine tournament wins and the Southwestern Conference championship. 

“This was an outstanding season and all the girls should hold their heads very high. With only one returner from last year’s top six, to win nine tournaments and have a great opportunity to qualify for state says a lot for the girls’ hard work and dedication. This group fought very hard the entire round at the sectional and the coaching staff could not be more proud of them,” said Coach Chris Eddy.

Last week, the Lady Panthers won their third consecutive regional championship in convincing fashion by beating their next closest competitor by 10 strokes. Leading O’Fallon and bettering the personal best she recorded earlier this year by three strokes was Chloe Davidson with 74.  

Other top ten finishers were Sophie Koesterer with 77 (3rd), Elizabeth Henken with 79 (4th), and Briana McMinn with 81 (7th). Koesterer and Henken also recorded personal bests. 

“It is great to see our depth continue to pay dividends for us coming down the stretch. To win the regional is always a great accomplishment and something the girls should always remember,” said Coach Eddy.

In a glimpse of things to come, the Lady Panther Blue and Gold junior varsity teams took first and second out of 12 teams representing nine schools in Thursday’s JV event held at Yorktown in Belleville. O’Fallon, paced by Christine Favela’s even par round of 54, placed eight individuals in the top 10.  Also medaling for O’Fallon were Maddie Vanderheyden with 58 (2nd), Bri Bierly with 61 (3rd), Grace Meade with 62 (4th), Sophia Toner with 66 (6th), Jaquelyn Whyte with 69 (8th), Haley Bartimus with 70 (9th), and Isabel Fowler with 71 (10th).