116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
ADEL – From the first day of practice, Kiki Bruner received a vibe from her teammates.
Washington, Iowa, Coach L.L. Kull shared the same feeling. One they have undoubtedly felt previously.
“I had a feeling from the start of the season that I was going to be part of something special,” Bruner said. “I was really excited. I had high hopes, too.”
The Demons continued to leave that type of impression on their supporters and opponents, leading Class 3A in every team scoring category.
Washington continued an exceptional season with one more dominant performance. The Demons fired a two-round total of 675, beating runner-up Gilbert by 28 strokes, for the team title at the Class 3A girls’ state golf meet Wednesday at River Valley Golf Course. They captured the program’s sixth team crown and fourth since 2015.
“We played lights out the entire year,” Kull said. “We shot super rounds right from the beginning in bad weather. We kept playing hard and working on different things.
“We wound up shooting pretty much the same all year. It was just very consistent. I’m real proud of the young ladies.
Bruner and classmate Anna Nacos powered the Demons. Bruner was the runner-up medalist, while Nacos tied for fifth. Makenna Conrad tied for 12th and Josie Tanner tied for 22nd, giving the team four scorers in the top 25. They teamed for a 335 on Day 1 and Kaylin Long contributed a 93 for the 340 second-round score.
“I think we all did well, especially with the pressure coming into state,” Nacos said. “There is no tournament that compares to this.”
Bruner was in contention for the individual crown up until the last hole. She carded a 2-over 74 Wednesday for 151 total, but finished two strokes back of Gilbert medalist Eden Lorhbach.
“A lot of people told me to just worry about the next shot,” Bruner said. “I was trying not to get too carried away because I knew if I did that it would mess my mind up. I tried to focus on every shot at a time and take it slow.”
Bruner was strong from the tee box during both rounds. She was accurate and straight, tallying three birdies. She birdied the par-5 No. 2 hole each day.
“My drives were great the past two days,” Bruner said. “I only missed one or two fairways today, which was really helpful. The first day my drives had been amazing. It didn’t let me down. My approach shots were pretty good, too.”
Bruner and Nacos have been constants at the state meet. Both are three-year qualifiers with six top-16 finishes. Bruner earned her second top-five medal, placing fourth in 2019. She closed her prep career with bookend team titles.
“We never really quite talked about it,” Bruner said about title expectations. “I think all of us had the state championship in our sights.”
Nacos was fourth in 2018 and third as a sophomore for Dubuque Wahlert’s championship team. She was a part of state title teams each season and that is something she will never forget.
“I was really happy for all three years I was able to go to state,” Nacos said. “All three years I was able to go with my team and there is no greater feeling.”
Cedar Rapids Xavier’s Kaitlin Hotchkiss used an impressive second day to ascend to a third-place tie in the final individual standings. She shot 4-over 76 in her final high school round, improving her round by nine strokes. Hotchkiss shot 161 overall for her second top-20 state finish.
Iowa City Liberty’s Bella Pettersen also managed a third-place performance at the 4A state tournament at Otter Creek Golf Course in Ankeny. The Lightning freshman and Mississippi Valley Conference Mississippi Division Player of the Year earned the school’s best finish.
Pettersen demonstrated consistency, firing two rounds of 71 for a 142 total. She finished one stroke back of second and only five from first. Teammate Neely Maurus shot 162 and placed 20th.
The MVC was well represented in the top 20. Cedar Rapids Prairie’s Addie Berg carded a total of 154, including a second-round score of 1-over 72, to tie for 14th. Western Dubuque’s McKenna Stackis placed 16th with a 156, helping the Bobcats to sixth with a team total of 693. Linn-Mar’s Tatum Depuydt was 17th with 157 and the Lions came in ninth.
In Class 1A, Edgewood-Colesburg’s Maddy Streicher closed her senior campaign with a state runner-up finish at Ames Golf and Country Club. She posted rounds of 77 and 79 for a two-day total of 156, finishing just two shots back of Lynnville-Sully state champion Greenlee Smock.
Streicher shot 38 on the front nine and posted her lone birdie of the round on the par-4 No. 10. She also placed fifth in 2019.
“An incredible golfer and person to coach,” Vikings Coach Alex Hanna posted on Twitter. “It was a privilege to coach her!”
Tipton’s Alli Nash shot a two-day total of 164 and placed fifth at the 2A state meet at the American Legion Golf Course in Marshalltown. Teagan Schaefer tied for 13th with 173, leading Williamsburg to a fourth-place showing and team total of 737.