Union Grove’s Sarah Schuster (left) and Waterford’s Taitum Beck are graduated, but both teams figure to contend for the SLC title again this year. (Mike Ramczyk/SLN)


By Tim Wester

Sports Correspondent

With success comes lofty expectations.

And the expectations are undoubtedly high for the Union Grove girls golf team after qualifying for the WIAA Division 1 State Golf Championship two straight seasons.

But before anyone makes plans to visit Madison in October, Union Grove golf coach Eric Swanson wants his team to focus on the Southern Lakes Conference and other area team competition first.

“I expect us to be pretty competitive within our conference and area,” Swanson said. “We are going to need everyone to step up their games to make up for the loss of our No. 1 player Sarah Schuster.”

Fortunately for Swanson, his team has already proven capable of stepping their games up in crucial situations. The Broncos return four of the five players from last season’s state-qualifying team.

Senior Megan Koch figures to lead the experienced group this season after a successful offseason.

“Koch is our top returner and has worked really hard to improve in the offseason,” Swanson said. “Right now she is striking the ball as well any player that I have had.”

Joining Koch are junior Sydney Staaden and senior Jackie Bianchi, who were first and second team all-conference performers last season, respectively.

Sophomore Liz Torhorst looks to nab the No. 4 spot after a successful freshman season as the Broncos No. 5 golfer last year.

While the top four golfers have plenty of experience, the fifth spot is still up for grabs.

Senior Jacey Staven, who was a top performer on the junior varsity team last year, could grab the open spot. Talented freshman Veronica Parco could also challenge for the opening as well.

“The key for us is going to be our ability to get a solid fourth score at each event,” Swanson said. “I think we have the players to do that, but it’s just going to come down to whether we can do that on a consistent basis.”


Lady Broncos win St. Ives

The Union Grove girls golf team is off to roaring start after winning the Union Grove Golf Invite at St. Ives Golf Links Monday, August 14.

The Broncos’ duo of Koch and Parco won the two-person scramble, with Bianchi and Staaden finishing third. The impressive efforts helped the Grove finished first with a team score of 157. Oak Creek (164) finished second, while Burlington (187) took third in the eight team event.

The Broncos look to continue their impressive start Wednesday when they travel to Elkhorn to battle the Elks at Evergreen Golf Club.