Oneida To say that the Jamesville-DeWitt and Fayetteville-Manlius girls golf teams finished close together in Tuesday's Section III championships at Kanon Valley Country Club would understate the case.
When the final Division I (large school) team scores were added up, the Hornets, with a 369, finished just three shots ahead of the Red Rams' 372, as they took second and fourth, respectively, behind Auburn, who repeated as champions with a total of 338.
And in between F-M and J-D lay New Hartford, an impressive third-place finisher with 371. What all the top four teams shared, though was a sense of accomplishment as they accounted for seven of the nine golfers that advanced to the June 14-15 state tournament, held once again at SUNY-Delhi's course.
Amid the season's best conditions - bright sunshine, moderate temperatures and a cool, pleasant breeze - scoring at Kanon Valley, hosting the sectional tournament for the second year in a row, remained tough.
Faring best among the local golfers, Fairfield University-bound J-D senior Molly Hair made it to third place, with an 81, trailing only Auburn star Larissa Carter, who repeated her individual sectional title with a two-over-par 75, and New Hartford seventh-grade sensation Sydney Bard, who posted a 77.
Hair's teammate, Junghye Kim, was looking for her first state tournament birth - and got it by shooting an 85 to finish in a tie for sixth place with Baldwinsville's Katie Walsh, who like Hair will make her third state tournament appearance.
In the race for the final two spots on the Section III state tournament team, F-M teammates Alexandra Millimaci and Kenzie Kingsley won out. With an 86, Millimaci finished alone in eighth place, while Kingsley, with an 88, edged out CBA's Ellie Baumgartner (89) by one shot for ninth place. Baumgartner will serve as the first alternate.